Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: PROCRASTINATE (08/04/16)
- TITLE: Much Too Late
By Robyn Harbour
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John at sixty was still handsome and extremely wealthy. Everything he bought and wore was the best money could buy. She knew that she would never want for anything she desired. But did he really love her?
Even more importantly, did she love him? Not in the way she had loved Steve her childhood sweetheart. She had dated Steve for three years and when she was twenty-one he asked her to marry him. She had loved him passionately and completely but the call of independence and a career was stronger, so she turned him down. There would always be others she thought.
Janet climbed the corporate ladder. She gained a Master’s degree in Commerce and was awarded a PhD scholarship to Cambridge University. Her thesis on THE EFFECT OF INTEREST RATES ON THE AFFORDABILITY OF URBAN HOUSING gained much acclaim. Two years ago she became the CEO of the biggest bank in the country. She met John at one of the many cocktail parties she attended, he had been married three times and was looking for a corporate wife that would be an asset to his multinational business.
Last night Janet had done a lot of soul searching. First was Steve, she had asked him to consider waiting till her career was more stable, he wanted a wife and children and was not prepared to wait. He had gone on to marry Carol, they had five children together and from what she heard they were happy and had just celebrated the birth of their first grandchild.
Jim, came along when she was thirty. A fellow banker, they had a lot in common and fell in love, they dated for over a year before he proposed. He also wanted children but she was not ready to give up her career; she was now a bank manager and there was an indication that she would be regional manager in the next five years. Children, if she had any would be well into the future. Jim wasn’t prepared to wait so he moved on and a few years later married June and they were blessed with two children who were now at boarding school.
It was another ten years before Janet had another serious relationship, this time it was with Angus, a Scot, she met at Cambridge University, and was working in the Merchant Banking sector. They fell quickly in love and he took her to Scotland to meet his parents. Things progressed well in their relationship till he mentioned that he was anxious to be a father. He told Janet that she would make an excellent mother.
Janet panicked and broke off the relationship. At forty she still had a few years before her biological clock stopped ticking. She had just been offered the CEO position and a few years as CEO would be a great way to end her career. Maybe in two or three years she would be ready to be a mother. Angus was not prepared to wait, instead marrying Gail twelve months later. Angus and Gail were at the Christmas party last December, Gail was hugely pregnant with her third child. They seemed very happy.
As Janet slowly traveled down memory lane she remembered each man who had loved her. Procrastination had cost her dearly. Was a career that important? No! Now there would never be children and grandchildren, she would never know the joy of pregnancy and giving birth. She was never to know real love, the type of love that is all consuming, passionate, and caring, to the exclusion of all others.
They would have a good life together and hopefully become good friends, but love him….she wasn’t sure. A million dollar home on the beachfront, a late model car, and overseas holidays were the only compensation she would have and they would not be enough.
After glancing at her reflection once more, she purposely picked up her bouquet and walked out the door. At least she would not be lonely anymore and that was some compensation.
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