Thursday, January 7, 2010

Marital Affair Excerpt


“The test came back negative.” More bad news from Dr. Wendell.

Lucas Sinclair turned to his wife, Colleen, sitting in the plush leather chair next to him. The when-is-it-going-to-happen look was plastered all over her face; blank eyes, lips neither smiling nor frowning, and pale cheeks. He grabbed the tissues from the inside pocket of his suit coat and handed them to her. Her cold hands trembled.

“Why can’t I get pregnant?” Colleen turned her head away, wrapped her arms around her empty belly and rocked.

Lucas rubbed her back and she flinched, letting him know his touch was unwelcomed at this particular moment.

Dr. Wendell fumbled with the chart on his desk. “You’re a real estate agent, correct?”

When Colleen refused to answer, Lucas offered the information. “Yes, we both are.”

“How many hours do you work in a given week?” Dr. Wendell looked at him.

This was the part of the visit where Colleen clammed up and refused to participate.

“Fifty to sixty.”

“Uh hum.” He jotted a note down. “And the new house, are you settled in?”

“We still have some unpacking to do, but the worst part is over.”

Dr. Wendell turned to Colleen. “Mrs. Sinclair, are you eating healthy? Getting enough sleep?”

“Why does it matter? You’re acting like this is my fault, like I can just will myself to get pregnant. Well, I can’t. I’ve tried.” She stood and walked to the wall of windows overlooking the city. “Nothing I’ve done has worked.”

“Colleen, we’ve been through this, no one is blaming anyone. I’ve run the test on both of you. Twice. There is nothing physically wrong with either of you, so at this point we need to evaluate the stress of your lifestyle. That’s all.” Dr. Wendell pulled out a calendar. “You need to plan intercourse when you’re ovulating, eat healthy, exercise. Those sort of things for the both of you.”

“We’ve been doing that for two years. I don’t need another chart. They’re all over the house now.” Colleen grunted as she shredded the tissues in her hands.

Dr. Wendell set their file down and took off his glasses. “I know I’ve asked you before, but would you be willing to talk to my colleague? She’d be happy to help.”

Colleen spun around and glared at the doctor. “Colleague? You mean a sex therapist. Someone to tell me how to have sex. Please my man. What, I don’t eat right, sleep right, work right? Now I don’t fuck right?”

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