Can you truly forgive the person who betrayed you? Think about it! They say forgive, but it’s hard to forget. You submit yourself completely to someone monogamously, but somehow, they found comfort in another person’s arm.
Through sick and through health. Through the good and the bad. Through rich and through poor. That’s what Sheryl reminded herself of her vows. She watched her husband fidget on the bed as she grabbed the tray off his lap.
Sheryl looked at the time. “The physical therapist will be coming in 30 minutes. Let’s get ready for a bath.” She went to the closet and looked through it. “Is there something specific you want to wear?” she asked. Honestly, it has been exhausting, catering to her husband. Early morning meant a thorough bath and every night she had to tuck him into bed. It was like nurturing a child.
Feeling helpless was the worst feeling any man could ever feel. Looking at his wife being nice, showing any signs of anger, frightened him more than getting caught in his office. Because he woke up in constant fear, many nights he would lose sleep because his conscience knew how he hurt Sheryl. Killing him with kindness. What an act of awful revenge, he thought.
Sheryl laid down his workout gear in the bed. She walked to the bathroom and filled the bucket with warm water. She grabbed the soap and sponge and approached her husband. Every day she gently sponged down her husband, cautiously attending his wounds and burns. Constantly asking whether she’s too rough or too soft.
Gary flinched every time Sheryl gets in between his legs. Every single time she washed his scrotum, he’s gotten uncomfortable. Not by her gesture but by the pain. The fact that he couldn’t feel much sensation below his waist contributed to the lack of erection. The burn, which was bearable, ached his skin. He looked at how gentle she was but suspected that she gladly accepted his fate. Every time she washed him, her smile was bleak and silent.
Gary was annoyed, “You need to talk to me.”
Inattentive, she looked at his mouth move. “What,” she asked hoping he would repeat his comment.
Gary grabbed Sheryl’s hands. “We need to talk. It’s been two weeks. You’ve been cooking, cleaning, washing…dammit…you’ve been too nice.”
Dismissing his notion, “You’re already hurting, and I didn’t want to add to that. We’ll eventually talk, but not today. You have therapy soon,” she said, wrapping up the bath.
“No, let’s talk about it now.”
She looked at his birthday suit as if the moment wasn’t the best occasion to take him seriously. He noticed her stare. “You‘ve seen this already,” he said, mentioning his nakedness.
Defensively, “You shared it with another,” she responded, referring to the fact that he had sex with his mistress.
Waving his hands. “Go ahead and let it all out. It’s been killing me. You don’t sleep in the same bed with me…”
Sheryl interrupted. “It’s too early for that. I can’t lay in a bed you shared with that trick.”
Really, he thought. “You don’t eat with me like you used to.”
“You need your space as much as I do,” she responded.
“You don’t surprise me like you used to—other than being too nice towards me.”
She rolled her eyes. “You’re bedridden. What else can I possibly do? And why should I?”
“You don’t even cater to my arousal.”
Sheryl chirped. “Your nerves are shot. You can barely sit up.”
Gary tilted his head. “You pretty much have every excuse in the book to not be here, but yet you still shower me, cook for me, and shelter me. Why?”
Sheryl yelled. “Because I’m still your wife.”
“I thought I lost my wife,” he yelled.
“Did you? I didn’t think you notice that you had one. Please share with me how you really feel. Because I don’t think you understand Me.”
Crying, “You look at me like I’m a stranger. I worry every night thinking about the day I won’t wake up because you kill me with the one thing I don’t deserve. Yes! I messed up. No matter how many times I apologize, it will never count because I constantly lied to you. Baby, I lost my life. And that’s on me.”
“Over a little girl,” Sheryl said through clenched teeth. “Over a conniving snake who only wanted to use you. You didn’t appreciate everything I’ve done for you. You didn’t love me the way I love you. You betrayed my trust. You humiliated me.”
Shaking his head in disagreement. “That wasn’t my intentions.”
She was taken aback. “Really? Then what were your intentions? Smash it and run? Was it supposed to be a one-time thing, that consequently repeated? Or weren’t you supposed to get caught? How you fill your plate with a bunch of snacks when you had a whole meal? Was it worth your legs? Your balls? The burn?
She chuckled. “It’s funny how people think that everyone is replaceable but let’s honestly answer this one question. No one can’t do what I can do for you, so why bother cheating? I am more than average. Put some respect to my name.
“You didn’t care about us. I never shared us with anyone else. We would be having a different conversation if the roles had changed,” Sheryl concluded.
“I love you,” he wailed.
“That’s not love. Did love stop you from betraying me? If that’s love, I don’t want it.”