Unfaithful, the movie
2006-01-08 - 4:14 p.m.

I'm supposed to be typing letters, but my brain is full.

First, let me mention that Jenn is polling her readers about the inherent cleanliness of soap. This is a matter to which I have given WAY too much thought, and it strikes me as very funny that someone else appears to be considering it as well. I also wonder way too much about the breakdown of moisturizer--is the stuff that's leftover on your hands that you then rub into someone else's hands because your skin is oversaturated (oh come on--we've all done that!) still as moisturizy as the stuff that came out of the bottle, or do some of the ingredients soak into your skin faster, meaning that what you share with someone else or rub into your elbows or wipe on a paper towel an inferior product mostly made of water and a little grease of some sort?

These are the things I think about. As I said in Jenn's comments--yes, I am a dork.

Yesterday, while I was cleaning parts of my house, I watched the majority of Unfaithful. on TBS Unfortunately, I missed the majority of the last 15 minutes while putting Will down for a nap, so I'm a little unclear on the ending. Would someone who has seen the movie please let me know what happens between Edgar telling the detectives, "MY wife has told you everything she knows" and Connie's "We could go to Mexico" speech after dancing at the wedding?

I gather that the ending is left rather ambiguous anyway, what with the placement of the car and not knowing if someone (he? she?) goes into the station, but...I feel like I missed something really important in there.

Regardless of the parts I missed, the movie made me angry. Angry at her, angry at him, angry at the gorgeous French lover. Once upon a time, in what feels like another life, I was the kind of girl who cheated on her boyfriend. Then I grew up. And in the first chapter of my grown up life, I fell in love with a man who was careless with my heart. The resultant pain was both his fault and my own. You know the saying--screw me once, shame on you. Screw me twice, shame on me. And I learned firsthand the pain that comes with having someone you love not honor the commitment you have to each other.

The commitment we shared was rather ambiguous, yes. We weren't married. SOmetimes, we weren't even dating. But that didn't make the hurt any less real.

And now...Now I'm married. ANd I take that very, very seriously. Kirk and I stood in front of our family, our friends, and God, and pledged our lives to each other, and that isn't something I undertook lightly.

I think a lot of people do. They figure that if the going gets tough, they can always change their minds, back out, move on. It's easy to get divorced these days. They don't see the risk in getting married.

I think it was a huge risk. A gigantic leap of faith. Because I don't believe I could just change my mind, back out, move on. I really do believe I'm in this for the rest of our lives, and that's (hopefully) a LONG time.

A while back, one of my "imaginary internet friends" pointed me in the direction of the Real Live Preacher blog. It's a site I've read frequently since then, especially since I'm still between churches at the moment. This morning I was reading through some of his archives, sort of a homegrown Jennifer church service of sorts, and I came across the following passage in one of his essays:

"I believe live is primarily a choice and only sometimes a feeling. If you want to feel love, choose to love and be patient."

The words struck me hard, especially in the aftermath of watching the movie. So many times, in this relationship and in every other one I've had in my life, I have that choice to make. I can choose to love, to honor our commitment, to remember that I'm in it for the long haul, or I can choose to go in the other direction, move on, walk away. Call the charming French man I met on the street who bandaged my knee and who leads the exciting, slightly aberrant life in Soho, or go home to my very steady, rather boring, trucking business owning husband in the suburbs*. I can choose to love, knowing that, like in so many things, the doing will lead to the feeling, or I can choose not to love and close myself off.

I choose to love. What about you?

*This is, of course, a reference to Diane Keaton's character in the move. I have neither a charming French lover nor a boring husband, thank you very much.


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