escalate (verb) – /ˈeskəˌlāt/ – become or cause to become more intense or serious

So here we are, the point where our paths crossed. As I said, they had brushed past each other months before. Now, they were about to collide. I was not in the best spot. Not that I use that as an excuse for my actions. It’s just the truth, and that’s what I am here to tell.

At the suggestion of a friend, I had decided to join an online music forum. She thought it would be a good way for me to make friends who shared my interests and tastes in music. She was a member, and several of our mutual friends were as well. Turns out, he was a member, too.

I remember the first time we “spoke.” Shortly after joining the music forum, I received a private message. It read, “How YOU doin’?!” It made me laugh. I could hear the fake Jersey accent in my head as I read it. Innocently enough, I responded back, “Good, thanks. And you?” And that’s how it began. Silly right? That a 5-year-long affair could begin from such a simple exchange…

From there, things began to escalate…

Have you ever ridden a bike down a big hill? You begin to pick up speed at an alarming rate. You don’t know if you can hang on to the handlebars. The fear of crashing creeps up into your chest. But, it’s also exhilarating. You feel free. That’s how it felt, as things began to escalate between the two of us. That simple, silly question started short online conversations. Short conversations turned to long emails. Long emails turned into swapping numbers. Swapping numbers turned into a phone call. A phone call turned into a plan… a plan to meet each other in person at an upcoming weekend music festival we both happened to be attending soon.

Let me stop here for a minute. I knew he was married. I’d like to say I wasn’t planning on any of this. That’s only partially true. I wasn’t planning on a long-term affair. However, I will freely admit I was planning on a weekend fling with a married man. I won’t make excuses by blaming it on my low self-esteem, or my emotional and physical traumas. But, I will blame it on my need to feel… alive. I wanted to feel alive. I wanted to feel anything other than shit. I naively convinced myself this was the solution.

At the music festival, we met for a drink. We did not make it to the opening show. We escalated quickly – clothes torn off, insanely intense sex, and not one look back.




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