How did I get myself in this position? I always try to do the right thing and stay out of trouble, yet I’m in more trouble now than all forty-one years of my life put together! My husband hates me, and my personal life, that I have worked so hard to keep private, is spread across the tabloids!
I should have known in this age of social media, with the obsession to take a picture every time someone sneezes, anything done outside the four walls of your home will be digitally captured by someone. Doesn’t matter the picture was taken in London and I’m in Canada, the internet connects us all.
My poor kids! I try so hard to protect them; their happiness is my sole reason for living a life I don’t want; now they’re in the middle of all of this.
Does it matter I’ve never been happier? Does it matter I now have all the pieces that were missing from my life? Does it matter I’m finally self-confident, emotionally and sexually fulfilled? Guess not. All that’s going to matter is I did the unthinkable.
I wish Dr. K. had given me a different response when I warned her I was going down the wrong path. I wish she told me to stay away from him, but she didn’t. For some reason Dr. K. thought I could make good choices. I bet she feels differently now.
One year earlier…
His eyes, the color of the Mediterranean Sea, draw me in. His succulent lips beg to be kissed. With cheekbones sharp enough to cut glass, his strong jaw provides the perfect frame. My fingers ache from wanting to plunge into his curly ebony locks. How can I not be entranced by a man like this?
“It’s not just how he looks, it’s how he looks at me. Without saying a word he makes me feel like the most beautiful woman in the world. Imagine what seeing him in the flesh would do?”
Doctors aren’t supposed to show emotion but Dr. K’s eyes widen as I speak. She waits for me to continue.
“I don’t feel right having these feelings for another man, but they won’t go away. What can I do?”
Dr. K. has been my counselor for years. She helps me when life gets overwhelming but this is the first time I’ve come to her about another man.
I squirm in my chair as a comfortable spot eludes me. Normally I feel at home in the petite office with the pastel walls, wingback chair and prerequisite leather couch, but not today. Maybe I shouldn’t have shared these feelings. What if she thinks I’m horrible?
“Those are some extreme statements, Danielle. You’ve thought about this a lot.” She glances at her well-worn notebook, scribbles a few lines, and looks back at me. “It’s not likely this is about this man but more about the feelings he evokes in you. Tell me a little more.”
“His name is Christopher Rhys. He’s a British actor my daughter introduced me to. I liked his show and I was drawn to him. His performances are so heart-wrenching one minute I’m overwhelmed and the next minute I’m looking for more to watch.”
I pause to get Dr. K’s reaction.
“It’s interesting but you still haven’t told me what attracts you beyond his looks.”
“He’s down to earth yet he loves Shakespeare and poetry and all the classics. I love these things too but I stopped enjoying them when I met Julien as it isn’t his thing.
“He admires powerful women, and he’s always the gentleman He talks about going after his passion at all costs and isn’t that what you’ve been telling me to do?”
Dr. K. smiles as she scribbles more notes in her book.
“Okay, I think we’re getting somewhere. You’re rediscovering a piece of yourself you tucked away and forgot. This is really about you. It’s only normal you’re drawn to these qualities as you miss them in yourself.”
I think about what she said. There could be some truth to it, but I think she’s underestimating the Christopher affect.
“Maybe, but I feel there’s more. The way he looks at women, gives me chills. My heart jumps out of my chest and my stomach ties into a huge knot. I wouldn’t call it a normal reaction.”
“There are no normal reactions, there are just reactions, and you know that, Danielle.”
“But these aren’t my kind of reactions. I’m practical and logical. I’m not interested in celebrities. Then along comes this Brit and my whole philosophy changes! Why do I feel this way when I’ve never thought about another man but Julien?”
“You just said Julien doesn’t share your passions. Things have changed in your marriage. You’ve changed, and for the better. Speaking about passion, how has it been between you and Julien?”
I laugh so hard I start to choke, but I see she’s not laughing.
“Oh, you’re serious? Non-existent. I can’t remember the last time we had sex, he always has some excuse. It’s demoralizing to know TV is more appealing than I am. Doesn’t every man want sex as often as he can get it? Julien goes to great lengths to avoid it. I’m such a failure!”
Salt-laden tears spill down my cheeks. Dr. K. hands me a Kleenex from her ever ready box. “So are you really surprised you feel like this for another man? Your husband doesn’t make you feel like a woman but this man does. He’s meeting your emotional needs.”
“You think that’s all it is?”
“I do. This man can make you feel special anytime you want, while Julien can’t even when you ask. Go home, talk to Julien and see if you can change the situation. Then decide if you feel the same way about this Mr. Rhys.”
She looks at her watch. “Time’s up so this is your homework for the week.”
“I’ll try. Wish me luck.”
“Good luck, but you aren’t going to need it.”
I slosh across the wet parking lot to get to my car. I’m still not convinced she’s right. I know Julien isn’t fulfilling my needs, but why Christopher? There are many men who can give me more than Julien yet I’ve never been interested in any of them. Why does he have such a hold on me?
I climb into my SUV. Hiding my red eyes with my tortoise-shell sunglasses, I pull into traffic. It’s a good thing I know this road well as my concentration is less than 100 percent right now.
Falling for an actor? Please! I’m ashamed of myself. But looking at his picture brightens my bad days. His face calms me and his words help me regain perspective.
I’ll try to talk to Julien but I’m not sure it will make a difference. At least I can say he knows how I feel and then it’s up to him. It’s not going to happen tonight though; I need time to figure out what to say.
The red light on my clock shows 10:59. The collection of large fluffy pillows on my bed set the tone for romance, but the only romance it will see is inside my head. I’m alone as usual.
I keep revisiting my conversation with Dr. K. I’m scared to talk to Julien. It means taking the first step again and I’m not sure I want to. I’m saddened by our relationship but I’m also pissed off that it’s up to me to make it better!
As for Christopher, gorgeous Christopher, I can’t get him out of my mind. Have you ever felt like the secret to your life’s happiness is right in front of you but just out of your reach? I’d do anything to have just fifteen minutes together. I know it would change my life. But every woman in the world wants Christopher so how will I ever get his attention? I can’t just casually run into him. He doesn’t tweet and he doesn’t have email. That just leaves… a letter?
I’ve never written a fan letter in my life, not even when I was a teenager. I bought every Tiger Beat Magazine; those sleek shiny pages covered with Shawn Cassidy and the Bay City Rollers. I never once considered writing to them; it would be a waste of time. Now I’m a grown woman with different fantasies and expectations. Now, I want more than a pretty face. .
I’m pretty good at expressing myself, and since
he’s a scholar of words, maybe a letter can catch his attention. Not sure
it’s the best idea but it’s the best I have, regardless of how ridiculous it
may make me feel.
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