Sex, Lies And Consequences Part 1
We followed her into Prakash’s office, me admiring the sway of her trim hips, Menka poking me in the ribs as she saw my gaze.
“Sunil, Menka, please, have a seat,” said Dr. Prakash Mathoor, a friend and neighbor for years.
“Look, I have good news and bad news. The results of your test have come back, Menka. It appears that you have an especially virulent and uncommon case of vaginitis. That’s the bad news. The good news is that’s it’s certainly treatable, but in your case, treatment will take a few months. Sunil, the bad news for you is that that part of Menka’s anatomy is out of bounds for you for at least 4 to 6 months.
We both breathed a sigh of relief that it wasn’t more serious than that. While I was a bit disappointed, I realized that my disappointment didn’t go very deep. It’s not as if we had a passionate sex life, in fact, it was very mundane and sporadic. I looked over at Menka and was a little surprised to see a small smile come to her lips then vanish quickly.
“Whew,” I exclaimed. “Thank goodness that’s all it is……”
Menka interrupted, “Explain the treatment, Prakash. I hope that it doesn’t involve going to the hospital.
“No, no, Menka. I will give you a prescription for vaginal suppositories. You are to insert one every morning after your shower and at night before bedtime. This is the treatment recommended and it’s more than 99 percent effective. You’ll be fine,” assured Prakash.
So, with prescription in hand, we left Prakash’s office and headed for home. I asked Menka if she wanted me to fill the script for her, but she shook her head and told me that she would take care of it. We drove in comfortable silence and I gave some thought to the fact that I wouldn’t be having intercourse with Menka for almost half a year.
It’s funny, while I was a little upset; I found that I didn’t have a deep sense of disappointment. I found myself a bit surprised that I was only a “little” upset. I glanced over at Menka and again found myself proud of how she had managed to keep herself so trim and fit. We belong to the club at our community and Menka has taken full advantage of their facilities to keep toned. Damn, she looked good despite her 45 years. I really believe that she weighs no more now than when we first married. Also, her early morning I hour treadmill certainly helped her maintain a sensible weight.
So why was our sex life so boring? I know that I’m now almost 50, but that shouldn’t mean that I should be virtually celibate. I still had no problem getting it up, so to speak, so why didn’t I find having sex with Menka more exciting? I knew that I still looked fairly good. I was just a bit heavier, but the extra 10 pounds or so was well distributed over my 6 foot frame. My dark hair was still full, although there were a few silver strands showing at my temples. Shit, I thought that made me look distinguished.
Damn, when we were first married, and even for years after, we screwed like rabbits. Okay, by the time we entered our 40s we did slow down a bit. Instead of 4 or 5 times a week, we were still being intimate at least a couple of times a week. But it wasn’t only the frequency of sex, it was the quality. We had been loving and we showed it. It was my fondest desire to make sure that Menka had orgasms and fully enjoy intimacy, and I truly believe she felt the same way. We loved doing for each other.
We’d been married now for almost 25 years and they have been, at least in my mind, very good ones. We met through a mutual friend my first year out of law school. I almost swallowed my tongue the first time I saw her. About 5′ 5″ tall, a beautiful figure, short, light black hair and flashing gray eyes. The whole package almost had me hooked. We hit it off immediately, dated for a year and married. The children came rapidly. Menka wanted children and she wanted them as soon as possible. Rahul was born a year after we married and Soni 15 months after that. Menka took the appropriate maternity leave and went back to work as soon as we were comfortable leaving the kids in day care. Rahul’s now married and Soni is a doing her graduation in college.
But things had very gradually changed over the past few months. Our coupling now was almost mechanical. Menka would not initiate sex and when I did, she would comply, but with little enthusiasm. That kind of response can deaden one’s desire, as it did mine. I guess it was just easier to not approach her. I just didn’t enjoy making love to a woman who might as well be sleeping.
I sighed and thought to myself, “I guess it won’t be all that tough for me to stop having intercourse with Menka. It’s not as if it’s been all that wonderful anyway.”
The next week was busy for me. I am a lawyer and a partner with a firm in center city and we were scrambling to put the finishing touches on a proposal for a prospective client. Landing this one would bring in a bundle of cash to the firm, so I was leaving the house early and coming home late. Thank goodness I had Sonali Desi, another partner in the firm, working with me. She was sharp and perceptive and I knew that the success of the project would be in no small part due to her participation.
Menka understood, she had been through times like this before and she understood how it worked. We would be frantic for a couple of weeks, and then things would settle down and we could resume a normal life again.
Menka was busy herself. She would leave for work not long after I did. She worked for the same medical supply company since graduating from college and was now a senior sales associate. Her income still amazed me, it ran well into six figures. You can guess that we lived very well.
It was on a Saturday, a couple of weeks later, that I managed to get a splinter in my finger while puttering in the garage and I couldn’t get the damned thing out. Menka wasn’t home yet, so I went upstairs into her closet and looked for her sewing kit for a needle to pry the sliver out. I then discovered, wedged behind a piece of luggage, a shopping bag from Westside mall. My curiosity got the better of me and I took the bag out and looked inside. I removed the box and opened it. Wow, a gorgeous negligee, transparent and very short. A very brief pair of panties accompanied it.
“oooooo,” I thought. “My sex life is going to be picking up. I’ll not spoil Menka’s surprise.” So I carefully repacked everything and put it all back where I found it. Now all I had to do is wait until Menka completed the treatments. When that was done with, we would celebrate in style. I hummed as I returned to the garage, totally forgetting about the splinter.
A few weeks later, as we were sitting watching the late news one evening, I turned to her and asked, “Menka, when you’re in Muzaffarnagar tomorrow, could you stop and get some cake from the PapaaJi’s Bakery?”
I loved that stuff. You see, Menka would drive into Muzaffarnagar every Friday to supervise a production unit of her company. A few months ago she had decided it would be easier to stay over in her company guest house and drive back to Delhi Saturday morning. That was better than fighting the traffic Friday evening.
I was a little taken aback to see a flash of annoyance cross her face.
“I’ll try, Sunil, but you know how busy I get when I’m in the Muzaffarnagar, so don’t get your hopes up,” she replied rather sharply. She then turned her attention back to the T.V.
What the hell was that all about? I wondered. I didn’t mention it again, but I noticed that she returned on Saturday without my PapaaJi’s cake and also without any mention of it. I was irritated, but decided not to make an issue of it. I was aware that our relationship over the past few months was not exactly loving. We tended to get annoyed at each other at the slightest provocation. I wondered where the love and caring had gone.
I started to wonder about our marriage. Is this what my future was going to be like? The indifference, the boredom, the lack of any meaningful intimacy, and I don’t mean only sexual. For the first time I began to contemplate a future which looked rather bleak. It was in this frame of mind that I waited for an opportune time, a time when we both were relaxed and lounging in our rooftop at Sunday.
“Menka, I really need to have a serious conversation with you,” I began.
Menka looked up at me with that same flash of annoyance. This time I just ignored it and bulled my way forward.
“You have to realize that there’s obviously something wrong with our marriage. We don’t seem to care as much for each other as we once did. We argue about silly things much more than are good for this relationship. Instead of conversations, we walk around almost ignoring each other. ” I paused briefly and then asked, “Menka, are you having an affair? Do you still love me?”
I saw her tense and her eyes harden briefly. She arose, came over to me and seated herself close to my side. “Oh Sunil, don’t be silly. You know that I love you,” she said softly as she reached to caress my cheek.
“And you’re right, of course. We are drifting apart; we have to remember why we’re together. I have to remember. I’m sorry, Sunil. I know that I have been difficult to live with lately. I don’t know why that is, but things will be different now. I think I needed to hear how you felt. Thanks, sona,” she murmured as she bent over to kiss me briefly.
I felt reassured, I really did. I recognized that all marriages go through something like this, a time when spouses take each other for granted. Fortunately, we saw that and we would take steps to overcome the ennui. So why was I uneasy? And why did Menka never meet my eyes as she professed her love for me?
Things did change and the next couple of months were dramatically better. Menka was much more solicitous and took the time to do the small things that mean so much in a union.