I must’ve been a glutton for punishment. Jude had invited me to his girlfriend’s house for a barbecue. I was wiped out and my apartment was a goddamn disaster. Depression did that to me. Ever since I caught X-man in bed with Desirae, after he promised we’d work it out (blah, blah, blah, was all I heard now when I thought of those words I had held so precious), it had been tough to keep my mood from sinking. Especially since I had slept with him that very morning, thinking we were on the path to reconciliation. That’s right, X-man fucked me twice that day: once for real and once when he took her into our bed.
The worst part of the situation was that I had thought the affair was my fault, that my preoccupation with my band and my music left him feeling so lonely that he didn’t know any other way to fill the void. What a crock of shit. There was no excuse for what he did. Last year, when I first discovered their erotic text exchanges, he told me that he was going through something. He loved me but had been feeling restless. He said he met Desirae at the coffee shop, where she was a barista. He often went there to read or do work on the nights I had practice or shows. He said it meant nothing. That it was a mistake. After I found more texts a few months later, he admitted that he had a problem. The affair had nothing to with me. It was him.
As for me, I was pathetic. That’s what love could do to you: Take a woman who was strong in every other area of her life and shrink her into a pitiful girl, pining away for an unworthy boy. I loved that man. I’d made a commitment. I blamed myself, my independence, for his indiscretions. So, I became less independent in order to give him what I thought he wanted.
The affair was not my fault. When I caught them naked in our bed and told him I was through, his story changed. He came to my apartment that night and crushed what remained of me when he said, “I fell out of love, and I didn’t know how to tell you.” Those words, on the same day that I saw another woman naked and gliding across him, broke something deep inside of me. I was sure I’d never be the same. I had trusted him. I had even trusted him after he betrayed me. I was too open for my own good. I still gave that man my heart even after he destroyed it.