Since the moment I realized boys weren’t so detestable, I’ve warred with the Other Woman. Each day that I look into my mirror, I hope that my curls fall distinctly in the right places, that my teeth are unrealistically white and toes perfectly polished, and that I can manage to go through the day without completely embarrassing myself. It’s hard work, because I feel like I have to keep two steps ahead of her. I have to be uncomplicated, single-minded, and confident. Fun and mysterious. Sexy, but not slutty. I have to ensure that the carrot I dangle in front of him today isn’t too close (because once he dines on it, he’ll lose interest), but not too far away (because he’ll see me as a lost cause). I can’t let the other woman slip her way closer towards his heart, or I’ll have to start all over.
You see, the Other Woman is Every Woman. Every woman, except me.
Walking to class, driving to work, or lounging by the beach I am constantly thinking and observing. Both him and her. I’m afforded the great task of sizing him, my potential, up. Not with too much scrutiny, because being picky certainly won’t help. But also, I need to keep an eye on her. Funny thing is, she’s a worthy opponent. Out of necessity and survival, I study her. But just when I begin to know somewhat her tactics or her movement, she switches something up. Her clothes, status, or motive.
She could be the cute Spanish secretary at my job. Or my cousin’s summer fling. His ex-wife who can’t let go. Or even his close friend that almost became his girlfriend. She could be my roommate. Or the co-worker that goes out of her way to listen to him. Or the random girl at the party that he had a great conversation with. The shapely White girl that sits behind me in class that eyes him when he comes to pick me up. Or some girl he went to high school with.
She could be anyone, appear at anytime. And the closer I get to him, the more I have to watch out for her. Our comfort could produce his complacency. And that’s usually when she’ll make her move. It only takes a moment; one swift, intentional move to realign the course of destiny. No matter how hard I try to make him happy…it won’t make a difference in whether or not he leaves me for her. Or dates us at the same time. It’s his decision, ultimately. And it’s all because I am no longer enough. I’m lacking something. There was a bit of small print that I missed when I signed on to fall in love. There are certain stipulations that I did not see…and it makes all the difference, I guess. The difference between finding a man and keeping a man.
No matter how many men I lose to her, there is always the chance to lose love to The Other Woman again. She’s like the perfect women with a set of unquenchable hungry eyes and soft lips that I can’t seem to compete against. Because men chase her, not me. She is their greener side. Their dream woman. The one that can turn the head of any man, no matter his relationship status. She is the woman that is a valuable commodity in this world of high divorce rates and commitment-phobic lovers. Basically, I’m driven by gaining victory over her.
Honestly…What is it that I truly want?
Peace. Emotional security. And time to learn how to give him what he’s secretly searching for…. in her.
My god, why won’t he give me time to evolve? Extend his attention span to notice that past my weary face is a pair of shoulders bearing the weight of his world and mine. I get up at least 30 minutes earlier (on average) than he does, just so I can prepare to give to him….and anyone else who’ll need something from me that day. So, the last thing I need is him leaving me for a falsified, care-free woman who is bound to turn into someone like me anyway…