Over the next few days, all she could do was sit and think about James and their time they had spent together. She wished things would have turned out very different but instead she was in a marriage that has no spunk in it anymore. Realistically, leaving the marriage was not an option. We have invested so much time already and thinking about another man was just plain wrong, and besides if we did fall apart it would be nice to find out what I want and figure this world out on my own. Grrrr, she snapped knowing that her husband was a few hours away from walking in that door and he did say he had something important to talk to her about so maybe he was realizing how bad things are and wants us to work them out. So, with that in mind, she grabbed her luggage and started packing for their trip. It did not take long especially since they would only be gone for two days, but she did not know where or what to pack! Bang! Bang! What in the world? She ran to the front door and tossed it open.
“ Bill, you scared me half to death!”
“Is my girl ready for some TLC with her husband?”
“ As ready as I can be,” she replied.
“Where are we going, Bill?“
“I thought maybe we could take a nice trip to Sandbridge Beach in Virginia. Fall is setting in and thought what better way to enjoy Indian summer at the beach!”
What could she say other than yes? It has only been about five years since they have had such a getaway like this. They packed up the car and headed on the road. It would be a long drive, but we had until Sunday night, early Monday morning to return. At first, it was a quiet ride, just the sound of Bill’s music playing in the background to drown out the silence.
“Can we talk?” Julie shouted.
“Sure sweetheart what’s on your mind?”
“Bill I am not complaining at all but what is this trip really about?”
He just kind of gave a blank stare. “I guess it has just been a long time since we did something together and thought this was a good time to do so. Is there something wrong with that?”
“No I suppose not but I…”
Bill once again turned on the radio, and we continued down the road. After only about a 6 hour drive we made it to our destination. Ah, they could already smell the sea salt from the ocean. Nothing could be more peaceful than listening to the sound of waves crashing on the sand.
“Julie, sweetheart why don’t we go check into the hotel, unpack our things and take a nice stroll along the beach?”
I certainly wasn’t going to argue with that after all the sun had just begun to set so it would make for a much more romantic walk. They unpacked their bags and headed towards the dock to the beach entrance.
“This is just breathtaking Bill!” she said as she grabbed his hand.
She had forgotten how much she missed his touch.
“Julie, what happened to us?”
Stunned by the question she tearfully said, “I wish I knew.”
They sat down on the beach and just held each other as the water brought the sand between their toes. They seemed to be the only two on the beach at that moment, and nothing else mattered. Bill looked at Julie with lust that she had not seen in so long, she was not going to take for granted what was happening. He gently slid his fingers through her hair and kissed her passionately. She felt a warm fiery feeling going up her leg all the way to the ends of her hair.
“Maybe we should take this to our room. There isn’t much privacy out here!” Julie said with a worried expression.
“Julie, cannot you ever go with the flow? You are always so uptight. Relax and enjoy this perfect moment.”
Just then Bill’s phone began to ring.
“Don’t answer it. Let it ring.” Julie frantically pleaded.
“I am sorry, it will only be a moment,” Bill said. So just like that, he was off walking on the beach and talking to whoever was on the other end of that phone. She picked herself up and walked back to the hotel room, alone. This was beginning to be too much for her to handle but yet she could not argue with him. Bill finally came back about a half hour later. He was not very talkative but nothing new there.
“I think I am going to take a quick shower and then we need to talk,” Bill said.
She sat down on the bed with her mind thinking of so many things he wanted to talk to with her about. After several minutes of deep thought, a vibration sound came from Bill’s pants pocket. At that second she thought of looking at his phone, but her conscious was telling her not to do that.
Bill came out wrapped in nothing but a towel. “Ok Julie, let’s talk. My boss and I have been talking about another transfer. Things have been going so well that he wants me to open a firm in California and run it.”
“Bill, are you kidding me? Is work all you care about anymore because I seem always to come last, and frankly I am sick and tired of it.”
“Whoa calm down, what’s your problem? We are living the high life. You have everything you could want, no worries about anything!”
“Can’t you see our marriage is broken? No communication anymore and money is not everything, although it appears to be for you! Is this why you brought me here so you could butter me up and tell me we are moving again and this time thousands of miles further from my family?” Julie cried out almost in tears.
“So what you are saying is you do not want to move?” Bill snapped back.
“You know what I will take myself home, and you can finish this weekend getaway because you did not want it. It was just a ploy to get your way. So you know what else, I want out of this marriage. I think I have put up with you long enough!”
Bill had a look of deep hatred on his face and threw his clothes back in his luggage. “You know what why don’t you find your way home because you are one ungrateful bitch! I will make sure you get nothing. I have given you everything your family could not provide you, and yet all I hear is that you want more! Well, guess what, now you can feel what it is like to be on your own without anyone’s help!”
So just like that he was gone, again! She threw herself on the bed and sobbed. There were just no words to describe how she felt, completely and entirely alone! She picked up her phone and called Wendy, hoping it was not too late to get ahold of her. The phone rang a few times and then a “hello” said an exhausted voice on the other end.
“Julie is that you?”
She could barely get the words out because she had been crying so much. “Bill and I had a huge fight, and he left me on our weekend getaway destination in Virginia.”
“Oh no, sweetheart. I am so sorry, but you know this has been a long time coming and if I am going, being honest with you it is time for you to stand on your own two feet, Julie!”
“But I love him and what am I going to do? I have never been on my own.”
“You love a man who took you from your best friend and your family. Do you love someone who has an ego the size of China? I am always going to be here for you, but I believe it is time to move on, and I will help any way I can. Your heart is so good, but it is time to get up and be whom you have always wanted to be, and a doormat is not it!”
She hung up the phone and turned in for the night.
The next morning she woke up feeling extremely sick to her stomach, after what happened the night. She called down for room service hoping it would help calm her stomach. The thought of losing her husband was not ideal considering he really would take everything away from her. If only she had just kept her mouth shut about how she really felt or maybe she should not have married Bill at all, she might have a life by now. Instead, she knew she had to apologize and possibly make another move. She began to cry all over again with every passing thought she had. Room service knocked on the door and gave her some soup and crackers as she requested. “Thank you,” she said, as she gave them a generous tip. It was a beautiful day outside, and she did not want to waste it but thought it was better to wait until her stomach settled down. She turned on the tv and ate some of her crackers and soup when her phone began to buzz. It was Bill sending her a text message. “Look about last night, just call me please!” Should I call him back she wondered or maybe let him mull over the fact that I am not at his beckon call! She ignored his message, well at least for the next hour and then couldn’t seem to hold off any longer.
“Hello,” Julie said in an emotionless tone.
“Hey, Julie I am sorry about what happened last night. I guess the pressure of this job and the hours are getting to me. Can you forgive me?”
“You know Bill, for the past four years I have done nothing but be a good wife and give you all I have, and you know what you have given me, heartache and pain demanding I do whatever you ask always rearranging my schedule for you! When does this change because I cannot take it anymore!” Julie said outraged.
“You are right Julie. You are right. I am a complete ass, but I know you believe in us. You always did when no one else would! That is why I talked to my boss this morning. Instead of moving right away I asked if I could do a three month trial in California instead of just picking up and moving again. He agreed to do it and if it works out maybe he could send someone else to take over for me and go back to just being in the office.”
“Bill,” she said with a little hesitation, our problems are never going to be solved with you halfway across the country.”
The line cut off. She was in such emotional distress the night before that she had forgotten to charge her phone. Maybe it was a sign, one that she desperately needs in order to find herself again! Her stomach had settled for a bit, so she got her bathing suit and went down to the beach with a towel in her hand. The breeze swept her hair from her face as the light beamed off of her hair. It was very quiet on the beach, some children running and playing and even a few dogs were enjoying the ocean. She watched as couples walked hand in hand down by the pier, sadly she was wishing that be what she would have been doing; instead, she sat alone with nothing but her thoughts. Colossal rain clouds began to approach so she gathered her beach towel and headed in. “Ma’am excuse me,” she turned around, and the head of concierge services was standing behind her. “I am so sorry to bother you, but your husband asked me to give you this message personally,” he handed her a note. “Thank you,” she said, as that sick feeling came back into her stomach. She took the note up to her room and sat on the bed. She was terrified to open the letter, but somehow she found the nerve to do so.
My dearest Julie, there are not enough words to express how sorry I am for hurting you and maybe a three month time apart will either make us or break us but for the sake of marriage do not give up on us yet. I have decided to pack up my things and head to California. I have left enough money in our checking account so that you can take care of the bills and even left some spending money for you to get yourself something nice. If there is anything else needed when I am gone don’t hesitate to let me know. Take Care.
She sat for a few minutes in silence until she could not hold it in anymore and began to weep. This game he was playing was just too much for her to bear any longer. She took her phone off the charge to call for a rental car to come to pick her up and allow her to get home. She noticed she had a few unread messages from her mom but didn’t open them right away. It just didn’t seem like the right time to tell her what was going on. Julie needed a change in her life, no more living the life that someone else has set for her, no more living in someone else’s shadow and most of all no more letting control and fear take over her life. It was time for her to set goals for herself and allow life to take her in a new direction, no matter what or where that direction may be.