On my 40th birthday, my wife gave me a one-way ticket to the Bahamas. Just one, one-way, meaning that she wanted some distance between us. What an odd time to tell me that. I’ve always been faithful, and I imagine she has too. But she works, and I work. We see each other barely six hours a week, not counting the time spent snoring away in bed and time spent trying to conceive our first child. I love her and always have. So, it’s of no surprise that this hurt me so. I didn’t know how to react, so I reluctantly accepted, thinking that the time would help us think our own thoughts and help us improve things.
When I arrived at my hotel, I began to unpack. I’d always been independent and packed my own bags, but my wife insisted that I needed to relax, and that she would do it for me. Fair enough, I thought, only to be surprised in the end by the existence of several condoms neatly stashed away underneath a pair of boxers. I’m not sure if I felt any sense of horror or disgust; just a bit speechless and inevitably bewildered.
It’s been four years since, and I’m flying back tomorrow in order to attend her funeral. My wife passed away about three weeks ago due to a rare blood disease. The doctors said that she didn’t suffer.
It’s always been mankind’s glaring weakness to judge people impulsively, on the spot, without thinking of the infinite possibilities behind a decision. I was wrong, and my anger got the best of me. But she expected me to do that, to react violently and leave my world behind. People have good intentions, sometimes so good that they’re unbelievable. And sometimes the cruelest of our decisions end up being the kindest.