The last three weeks have been rather tough. Youngest broke his elbow, Thanksgiving and all the holiday stress with it, Design II finals, & finally home life issues. The elbow will heal, Thanksgiving comes and goes, finals can be passed or failed(I passed). The last one though is the toughest. I entered into a business arrangement without talking with the one person who I should have first, my wife
I love my wife, and anybody who has ever chatted with me either on here, or in person, knows that I love her and always talk fondly of her. I hold to the idea of always being by the side of the one you love, no matter what: sickness, health, anger, happiness, sadness, joy, depression, exhilaration, shit getting thrown at you, love tackles, punches being hurled your way, kisses to the cheek before leaving, verbal assaults, compliments galore. Because I am willing to endure so much, I forget that it blinds me as well. A person poses provocatively, I say "You look sexy". It's words, and beyond that, it has no meaning to me. I see an angry person, I say, "Well you look pissed." Not the smartest things to say, but honesty is the best medicine. I pass a confused person, and I'll stop and say "You need some help, you look a little lost." These are examples of things I say that I don't really give a second thought to, I call it like I see it. I live, observe, and try not to get crushed in the daily grind of it all.
I don't know how these traits relate to surviving life, but they have gotten me to where I am today. However now, I'm realizing more and more that they are not helping me any more, but rather hurting me now. The issue is, I'm married, and my naivete, clueless factor, inherent attempt to see good in people, has done tripped me up hard.
I like seeing the creative cosplays that people come up with to portray their favorite characters. I have been in anime for 20 years now, and characters that I enjoyed seeing years ago, are no longer done. I remember the first Anime Central when no Ryouga from Ranma 1/2 showed up in the cosplay contest. It was sad, but times and likes change, and progress marches on. This year, marking 20 years of being into anime, I thought to myself, I would try to find someway to bring back some of those older characters. "Heroes of Cosplay" on the SyFY channel was showing that there was still this vibrant cosplay community out there, so I thought why not try and find a cosplayer that posted here on DeviantArt to try and sponsor. The idea was that I would provide the funding, while the cosplayer would make the outfit and take pictures of it. I thought at first I would try multiple different artists, but eventually decided to keep it at one for simplicity sake. They would get to keep the costume and add it to their inventory for con garb and I would get to see some old characters that I hadn't seen done in years. It was a win-win scenario to me.
Well, after about 6 months of diving through the cosplay groups and folders on here, I decided to finally give it a shot with asking one of them. Messages were exchanged for a couple weeks and a business outline was agreed on after a month or so. The first one was completed in August, and we moved on to the second one. I had some car issues on my end which delayed the start of the second one, but eventually it got started as well and mostly completed. It was enough of the way done, that we had started talking about the third project, but it had never really gotten farther then just a quick mention. Now, this seems straight up and nothing wrong, and to me, this is how I saw it. To the cosplayer, I honestly believe this is how they saw it as well.
However now, this is where my wife entered into the picture. That "call it like I see it" I mentioned earlier, well, that's where the tough part has come in. The cosplayer was a woman, and some of the poses she did were "alluring" in both pose and body language. I complimented her on those attributes, and moved on, never giving it a second thought. I was married, she was in a long-term relationship with a boyfriend(I recently found out fiance) and we had both made it clear that this was a business deal and nothing more. She always gave the impression that my compliments were just that and never gave them a second thought. My wife though, she saw this: cheating, an affair, unfaithful, me shacking up with a "whore", a girlfriend on the side. I ended the business deal, and have done everything in my power to show that this was nothing more then a business deal, but I think I'm losing the battle.
Two weeks ago, my wife said she would work with me and I would show through my actions that everything was on the up and up. Yesterday that started falling because a project that multiple artists are attached to, with one of them being the above mentioned cosplayer is about to go live. Now to be honest, one of the other artists in this project is someone who I have chatted with off and on for I want to say close to 4 years now. This project is the first time that I would actually have something of theirs SIGNED and in my hand in that 4 year span. Now though, my wife is threatening to shred it upon even seeing it at our doorstep because of it's association. Because of my interest in this project and the fact I paid for it months ago now has little deterred her resolve.
I don't know what to say, I don't know what to do, I don't know how to survive this. I don't know anything any more. Three children hang in the balance and I don't know how to save them, my wife, or myself. I know I will not stop loving Bambi, I know I will not stop caring for her, and I know I will not stop fighting for her. Those absolutes have sustained me, but I don't know if they will help me any more.