Someone was knocking at the door. Misty had no idea who it was, but she knew who she wanted it to be. The same person she had waited for the last two years.
Misty moved halfway across the country for a clean start. A new life that didn’t involve Craig. It had been a difficult relationship from the start. Yes, he was married. It’s hard for her to even say that out loud. Everyone told her it was wrong. The irony was that it wasn’t even his marital status that was now the problem.
That job was not at all what she wanted. She was supposed to be a lawyer, but that all changed when law school was sidetracked by a baby and a husband who couldn’t hold a job. She loved her son with all her heart and it tore her to pieces to leave him everyday for a secretarial job at an advertising agency. That was not how her life was supposed to turn out.
It was three years of long hours and day care drop offs before Misty finally realized that she could make it on her own. She used the bonus she got with her latest promotion to hire a lawyer and take on the role as single parent. It wasn’t much different than the role she had been doing. She and toddler Bryan found a small apartment near her parents home. Things were tough for awhile before she had her own corner office and an account manager title.
During the transition of jobs, houses and the loss of her spouse, Craig was always around. He listened and comforted, but mostly he made her laugh. It was a long time before she even thought of him (or anyone else for that matter) as more than a friend. Somewhere between the laughing and crying came the hand holding and flirting. Before she knew it, Misty was in love with Craig and he shared her feelings in their secret meetings.
It was a complicated situation. Yes, she knew they always said that, but she could see this one for herself. Craig had two children in their early teens and a wife with bipolar disease. Her personality would change up and down. Craig would get the phone calls to pick her up. Or, the children if she was unable to get them. At times his wife would even show up at work, often making a scene cajoling in her high state, or crying in her low. He could not get her to take her medicine regularly. It was obvious Craig couldn’t leave this woman. How could he?
Misty’s relationship with Craig continued to grow. He was her friend and her lover, but he was someone else’s husband. For awhile it was fine that way. Afterall, she had Bryan at home who was just starting public school and taking all her attention. She had a great job that commanded many hours. Then everything changed. The economy begin to take a downslide and there was no more job. And with no job, there was no Craig everyday.
There were resumes sent all over and little response. Finally, there was an opening at an ad agency in another state. It was a thousand miles away and would be a different life. She and Craig had kept in touch since she left the office. He still had his job and his wife’s condition was continuing to deteriorate. Misty knew that she couldn’t stay put for Craig. It was time to move her life on so she took the position, packed up the house and moved Bryan to their new home.
That was two years ago. The new job was good. Her social life had been a bit better with a few dates here and there. Every night, though, she went to bed thinking of Craig. And every day she woke up with him on her mind. She had heard that his wife had committed suicide and he blamed himself for not watching her carefully enough. Misty had thought long and hard before writing him a letter. In the end, she said nothing about herself or her feelings. She just offered her thoughts to him and his children. After all, what was there to say?
As her mind wondered back to the moment, Misty headed toward the door. Her eyes brightened as she looked at the envelope from the mailman. It had Craig’s return address. She opened it with a smile of hope in her eyes, until she saw the pre-printed “Thank you for your kind thoughts.” Misty knew that would be her last message from Craig. She closed the door and never wondered again who might be on the other side.