Does that make me a terrible wife?
I'm in bed with my husband and it feels amazing. He knows just what I like, but still mixes things up to keep me surprised. The guy's got moves. We are comfortable together. Our rhythm is easy. I know he's enjoying himself. I know I'll end up enjoying myself at least once, if not two or three times (wink).
I've never felt better in my life, so it feels like a criminal act when I close my eyes and imagine the man of my dreams, the man that excites me most, the object of my deepest desire. It's my husband ... from 25 years ago.
We met in freshman year at college. He was an oddity at the pricey, private school in upstate New York. He wore a bandanna over his partially-shaved head, combat boots and a scowl. He looked like a punk rock pirate. All the other boys wore chinos and loafers and smelled like Polo. And they were cute but he was hot.
He made me feel things I'd never really felt, and in the extreme. I was a virgin, but my fantasies were anything but chaste. I knew only one thing with absolute certainty at that point in my life: I wanted him. Bad.
He had a girl back home, of course, as freshman guys often do. That didn't stop me from throwing myself at him like an elk in rut, all under the guise of friendship. I convinced him I just wanted to be friends, which was the biggest lie I ever told but allowed me to keep him close. I could be patient, I told myself. I had my whole life ahead of me.
It took a couple years of unrequited lust before I finally got my opportunity and seized it. And it was every bit as glorious as I'd imagined. To me, he was sex personified, and I could never get enough. I married him to lock in the deal.
Then careers. And kids. And bills. And dying parents. All the ickiness and stress that comes with building a real life together. I've seen him at his worst and vice-versa.
And now when I look at him, I no longer see my Sex God. I see the man who helps clean up after one of the kids' pukes. I see the man who seems angry all the time due to job insecurity. I see all the hardship of our decades spent together.
And I love him. Deeply. But as the friend I always claimed to be, not as the lover I always wanted to be. What happens when the love is strong, but the lust is long gone?
The boy I fell in love with wasn't as good in bed as my husband is now. We were more awkward together and shy. I didn't always ask for what I wanted because I wasn't even sure how to get it. And he wasn't nearly as patient because young men don't know they need to be.
At the time, none of that mattered. We weren't burdened by reality. The world around us didn't exist. I was lost in his smell and his skin. I close my eyes and I find myself lost again.
Am I a bad wife or a good one? I honestly don't know. I've never cheated on him — and wouldn't unless they perfected cloning. Is it my fault that my desires are age-ist? It would devastate me to know my husband had to remember the pre-Y2K version of me to get revved up but at the same time, I still try to stay in shape and look my best for him.
And he ... doesn't. That's how I justify it, my time-hop fantasizing. But I never let myself entirely off the hook.
Real life is really hard — and not in a sexy way. I love my husband with all my heart. He's a good man, a great lover and my best friend. But sometimes it takes a trip down memory lane to get my juices flowing. To a time when the future was too distant to even imagine, and reality was everyone else's problem.