Imagine that you're preparing to attend a friend's wedding, the babysitter is downstairs keeping the children engaged, your husband is looking for a shoe and he decides to tell you that he had an affair a year ago while you were pregnant. So begins Husband and Wife by Leah Stewart.
Sarah Price is forced to accept that her marriage is far from perfect. She also realizes that Nathan's newest book INFIDELITY has far-reaching implications now that he's admitted to his own infidelity. She has given up on her own creativity as a poet to work and support their family so Nathan could continue to write. Sarah thought she was happy but soon realizes that she has just become accepting of life changes rather than being truly happy. In an effort to regain her sense of self, she plays hooky from work, packs up the kids and travels from North Carolina to Texas by car. She stays with friends in Texas and starts a "relationship" with a college friend that seems to appreciate her for who she really is.
In many ways Sarah has to learn to accept that she is providing more restraints on her life than anyone else. She can't blame Nathan or circumstances on where she is with regards to being a poet. She decided that she couldn't write poetry anymore and that she had nothing more to offer creatively. When she realizes that marriage and life is about compromise as well as growth, she realizes that creativity is ultimately in the mind of the beholder. If she wants to write poetry she can, if she doesn't then she won't. Along with this realization comes the knowledge that you can't ever go back in time.
Although I condemn Nathan's extramarital activities, I found that I could only sympathize with Sarah so far. Her reaction of "you had an affair so I should be able to have one too" is very childish. I found Husband and Wife to be a decent read, providing a credible and realistic story even with the juvenile attitudes and behavior.