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Jude McLean Author

Sneaking Out - Part 1

00:00 / 04:19

I have a confession. I've been sneaking around on my husband. It's sad but true. But I feel like I can tell you all because there aren't any real consequences. You can leave me comments telling me what a wretched wife I am, or stop reading my articles, but you can't yell to my face, kick me out of the house, or divorce me. So I am using you, my dear readers, to test out my penitent speech in hopes that I find just the right words to ask forgiveness. 


Last Tuesday, I woke up to the sound of typing, mouse-clicking, and nerdy phone chatter. It wasn't loud, but it was there. I lay in bed with my eyes closed, trying to convince myself that I didn't hear it, and when that didn't work, I tried to convince myself that the sounds didn't bother me. Yeah, that internal conversation between me, myself, and I lasted a whopping 10.2 seconds before I screamed into a pillow. The final straw was when Twister, my cat, came barreling up the stairs and trounced me all while announcing his arrival at the top of his feline lungs. "That's it! I'm outta here!" I said to Twister, who was standing on my chest with his nose pressed next to mine, expectantly.


I promptly shoved his adorable little face out of mine and got dressed. Okay, maybe I wasn't actually "dressed" per se. I threw on my Golden Girls pajama pants and a blue t-shirt. They were the first thing I saw; don't judge me! I didn't put on socks. I didn't brush my rat's nest of a coiffe, heck; I didn't even brush my teeth. I grabbed my phone and car keys and left. I didn't even bother with my purse. I didn't say goodbye. In fact, I went to painstaking efforts to make certain I made as little noise as possible so that my husband would have no idea I had left. Once I was out of our driveway, I had no idea where I was going or what I would do once I got there. I just knew I was leaving. 

Thirty minutes later, I was in a pickle. The problem? I left the house looking like a zombified Golden Girls fan with freezing feet.  And I was hungry. There's a "smack my head" moment if I ever knew one. Clearly, I did not think this running away thing through. I wouldn't be caught dead walking into a public place looking the way I did. So I was stuck in the car. Well, drastic times call for drastic measures. I was hungry, so I pulled into McDonald's. Junk food, but it would do. Just because I looked like a zombie didn't mean I wanted to eat like one. Then I parked my car at the nearby Walmart. Yes, that's right. I sat alone in my car, eating chicken nuggets in the Walmart parking lot. As I sat there enjoying the silence that was only interrupted by the occasional slurp of my drink, I looked around me and spat out my Coke when I saw that I was not alone.      


There were other runaways scattered around the parking lot! And they were eating chicken nuggets too! Men and women were sitting alone in their vehicles, messy hair, pajamas, with a crazed, zombie look in their eyes. If any of us made eye contact with the other, we would give a weak, defeated, slightly mental smile and quickly look away. Desperation recognizes desperation. We had all joined a club that we didn't know existed, "Spouses Hiding In Toyotas”.   We didn't have a club president. We were all equal members. Pitiful creatures, we were, holding our French fries like they were the One Ring.

Eventually, I went back home after I had properly disposed of all evidence of my whereabouts. Luke, the husband, asked where I had been. “I didn't even know you left,” he complained. That was the point- tough nuggies darlin’. I didn’t answer. Instead, I smiled, waltzed past him, and started brushing out my hair. I had found my people. 


So much for penitence. That confession can wait for another day.

Read Sneaking Out Part 2

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