My phone battery died just as I left the parking lot, so I couldn't even vent. I got home and just had time to start telling Neaksis what had happened, when in stomps AJ, yelling and saying he's definitely leaving this time. First he was going to pack then and there. Then he was going to pack in the morning. And it was, let's say it together, boys and girls, ALL MY FAULT!

I really believed he would leave that time. (Unlike all the other times. ) In fact, by this time I was half hoping he would, just because I was getting so worn down. Like pretty much everyone else, I had melted down to skin and bones, and was sick a lot. For a while Neaksis cooked for me once or twice a day, then sat there and nagged me to eat. Had she not intervened I probably would have been hospitalized before too long, and I do not exaggerate. For a while I was so weak I could hardly walk around, and one good virus would have taken me down hard.

(Thank you, Neaksis.)

But he didn't leave. The TM's got worse and worse, but I couldn't find anything else to confront him with. Then, when I thought life couldn't be any more awful, he hired her to work for the corporation.

Now I was signing her paychecks, calculating her hours, filing her reports, and standing by while my husband talked to her on Yahoo Messenger with me there in the room. Naturally he would close the window down when I walked over, but I could always tell by how he acted. Several times he even talked to her on the phone while I was around, just trying not to give away that it was her. I always knew, but bided my time. After all, he hadn't said anything that was more than friendly.

The weeks dragged on, and though I tried to keep up my efforts, I was just getting so sick of the whole thing. I finally told a good friend of ours, "I am not going to be the wife of her boyfriend any more." And just waited for the right time to tell him.

It came a few days later, when late at night I fell asleep on the living room floor while he was working there at the computer. When I awoke, I didn't move or blink, because he was talking to her. They talked about a lot of boring stuff, but then AJ said about one of the other employees, "He's just jealous because he doesn't know we're 'together'." He said he would call her back in a while.

A few minutes later I "woke up" and went to bed. I could still hear every word...more of the same. I had what I felt I needed. With much prayer, I mentally prepared my speech for the following morning. I was finally strong enough to tell him, it's her or me. If it's not me, then you need to leave. I will not be the wife of someone else's boyfriend. (I was pretty fond of that line.)

The next morning I cornered him in the bathroom and began my speech, pointing out once again how much his actions had hurt everyone involved. And then it was like God muzzled me, and I just felt very strongly that I should not continue - not right then.

Looking back, I think it was much the same idea as when God told Abraham to sacrifice Isaac. He didn't want him to go through with it; He needed to know Abraham was willing. In the same way, it wasn't quite time yet for me to act so decisively, but I needed to know for my own sake that I was strong enough to do it at any time: to actually lay down the fight and tell my husband to go.

It must have been when the first stitches were taken in my Cape of Power. For the first time, I didn't feel like I was at his mercy. He was living on borrowed time, only he didn't know it.

Later that day, I finally was ready to try and learn something about affairs. Up to that point it had never occurred to me that there might even be something to learn. I sat down at the computer and typed in a Google search for coping with infidelity. At the very top of the list was a site called Marriage Builders.

I read every article that day. The next day, I read them all again. The day after that, I got curious about the discussion forum. That was April 18, a very momentous day for me. Just when I had reached my wits' end, and had no clue what else to do, the clear path was laid out before me, step by step.