Aaron met Erica on the rebound.
He was coming off a hold-on-to-your hat affair with Noelle, a flashy lady with a Jaguar, a 2 million dollar apartment and a husband. A husband who was frequently out of town and when he wasn’t, he was pursuing his own extracurricular activities. So Noelle was free to take Aaron to the best restaurants, order the most expensive wines, and then sign for it with her husband’s platinum American Express card. Aaron was in heaven. Not only were the fringe benefits great, he really loved Noelle.
But then Noelle got tired of Aaron. He was crushed.
Slowly he began to pull out of it. And that’s when he met Erica. She was a just a plain, nice woman. No Jag, no platinum Amex. And no husband. Just an easygoing girl from a blue-collar background. Aaron was the only professional man she had ever dated. She adored him. He treated her like dirt.
Aaron was divorced and he had a couple of kids. Aaron told her, right up front, that his kids came first and always would. Whenever they were around, which was every weekend, they got all of his attention. Everything was planned around them.
Erica went along with it. She liked Aaron’s kids. She liked kids. So much that she wanted to have one of her own. She told Aaron. They were living together by this time, and he told her, “I’ve already got kids. I’m looking forward to having some life as an adult soon.”
When Erica talked about marriage Aaron said, “’Why get married?’ I was only joking.”
Did he ever tell her he loved her?
“Probably not,” says Aaron.
Vacations were also a problem. Erica had her heart set on a week in Mexico. She said it would be so good for them to have some time alone. She started bringing home travel brochures. He told her to go with her cousin.
So Erica said, “Okay, I will.” And she did. She packed her bikini and booked a week’s vacation.
Aaron picked her up at the airport. Erica walked off the plane with a good-looking young man and introduced him as the guy she happened to have sat next to on the flight. It did strike Aaron that they said an unusually warm good-by for a couple of casual seatmates.
And then the phone starting ringing in the middle of the night and Erica would take it in another room. She stopped talking about marriage. And then one day she told him she was moving out. She had met another man. Yes, it was the guy at the airport. He loved her, and she was probably going to marry him.
Aaron was shocked. Shocked that Erica wasn’t always going to be there for him. Shocked that he cared that much.
“I met her on the rebound, but I really loved her. I just didn’t know it. All of a sudden I realized I was going to lose her.”
He told her he had been selfish. He would make her first in his life. He would take her to Mexico. Of course they would get married. Of course they would have children.
No, Erica told him. It was too late.
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