I waited and waited. Feeling terribly awkward I gradually inched away from the counter. The girl talked to other employees in the booth and I avoided eye contact. The minutes seemed to drag on like hours and my imagination began to run wild. I remembered a post Pete wrote just a month ago. There have only been two or three times that Pete hasn't been immediately forthcoming with disclosures, but our trip to Washington D.C. a couple years ago fell during that time. So he told me about what he was going to write in his post just the night before he wrote it.
In other words, I learned just weeks before, for the first time, that Pete had masturbated in the restroom of one of the most somber places in our nation. And here we were, thousands of miles away, the seconds ticking by as Pete lingered in the men's room at Pearl Harbor. I felt a knot in my stomach and my heart started to race. The sun felt hotter and I was sure the girl at the ticket counter was watching my developing anxiety attack with fascinated intrigue.
It felt like forever when Pete emerged. He signed the receipt and saw my distress. I told him why I'd felt nervous and he apologized and chalked it up to a busy restroom and the fact that bowel movements can't be rushed. I bought it.
Last night I laid out some boundaries for Pete. The last of which was a statement that I would not travel or vacation alone with him for one year. I love to travel, and he and I have both loved planning trips with his frequent flyer miles. This was a painful boundary to set, and will be harder to enforce. But our romantic getaways are starting to make painful triggers for me, and I don't want every historical landmark in the country or world to elicit memories of the escapades of a sex addict.
After I rolled over to go to sleep I was bombarded with those pesky thoughts that haunt us WoPA [INSANITY] and I started to put together some pieces to a puzzle. I felt like a detective gathering evidence. I realized that the morning of the day we spent at Pearl Harbor was the morning Pete went to the sex shop. He really WAS masturbating in the restroom I thought. I blurted it out in a question
"WERE you masturbating in the bathroom at Pearl Harbor?"
"No." He said.
He sounded wounded and defeated from our boundary conversation and I believed him. Until I didn't believe him. And there is no way I can ever know for sure. And although he is usually honest, he isn't always honest. He had plenty of reasons to lie, and it felt like no reason to tell the truth. I'll never really know I guess.
The other day I was talking on the phone to my brother. He had called to ask about our trip but we had gotten distracted exchanging depressing stories about people we both knew who had committed fraud or had extra-marital affairs. He wondered aloud about what was going wrong in lives of our friends, good people, that caused them to make uncharacteristic mistakes.
"They just don't take trips with their wife to Hawaii I guess!" He said as a joke. I laughed. But it hurt. Because they do.