Not infrequently, during a demanding day at work, I would find a deliveryman standing in my office with a boxed lunch Alex had ordered for me, to make sure I remembered to eat.Flowers arrived frequently, for good reasons and for no reason.We hopped flights to Rome or Paris for a few days; we spent weeks tracking lions in Africa, trekking through Southeast Asia, or making love on empty Caribbean beaches.
When the house music came on and everyone headed for the bar, Alex — handsome and playful — took my hand and led me to the dance floor.
In the time it took for his fingers to encircle mine, what had been a quiet attraction became an all-consuming need.
As Alex placed his hands on my hips, I knew with absolute clarity that I was about to have an affair.
I knew it was a decision that could unravel even the strongest of unions.
Sharing details with close friends is asking them to bear the burden of a guilt that isn't theirs.
And how could I explain to them — let alone myself — that, even as I was pursuing this affair, I was still in love with my husband?Professionally, I was ambitious and filled with energy, tearing into each day like a dervish; Alex, on the other hand, was mellow and observant.He was nothing like James and the men I had been drawn to in the past: passive instead of ferocious, content instead of constantly conquering.I slept in on weekends while he got up to tutor underprivileged children. And for the first few years of marriage, that reasoning held water. But every weekend, every stolen vacation, reminded me that we were in this together.We cooked extravagant meals for each other and for friends.His schedule required him to be gone most weekends; when he was home, he was somnambulant.