Early Riser (at the end of a marriage)

Early Riser

She woke up how she wakes up every day, thinking about herself and how angry she was at her husband. He was clearly trying, but he was seriously fucking up. And even as she warned him, “You need to listen to me. I. Am. Not. Happy,” it was clear he was not changing enough.

Yes, he got a babysitter and a housekeeper. Sure, he put more money in the bank by getting a better job with a one-hour commute. And she had to admit, he had become more charming than ever in his approaches to intimacy. But there were still major problems. Major.

In the Excel spreadsheet she liked to keep track of all the expenses of the household. He had been overspending his budget on music gear for the last few months. “Thank god,” she reminded herself, “He got that new job.”

In her kitchen, she drank her first cup of coffee and thought about repainting the cabinetry. It was 10 am, she’d slept in, as he had taken the kids to school on the way to work. She had one call later in the afternoon, then she had to go pick up the kids, one in middle school and one in high school. The route took about 30 minutes. It was a nice neighborhood and both kids would probably want a snack and then run over to friends’ houses. Or they might convene at her house. It didn’t matter. Kids were the magic. Her kids were her everything.

They had agreed after their son was born that, if possible, she would be a stay-at-home mom for the first five or six years. It had been 15 years so far, and she enjoyed having most of her days free as a consultant.

Her husband texted from work. “Just checked my calendar, and my last meeting should finish at 6 pm. Can I grab something for dinner on the way home?”

Even his texts had begun to feel like interruptions.

Read more Short-Short Stories from John.

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