He must be cheating on me. My husband, that is. I’m convinced that he is seeing someone else. And I know who it is too.
It’s probably the pretty, curly-haired girl at the office. It has to be. I mean, she’s so pretty and she wears high heels to work every day. Who does that?! It’s not even a special occasion. He probably notices things like that. He probably wonders why I don’t wear high heels every day.
And I think he’s also cheating with the neighbor across the road… the one without kids who goes on hikes every weekend and smiles cheerily when she greets us in the morning. He probably thinks she’s fun and adventurous. He probably hates my boring routines. He probably wishes his life was fun and adventurous too.
No wait, he’s cheating with his ex-girlfriend. That’s a definite. I saw her at the mall the other day. She looked so put together and happy. We locked eyes and I tried hard to show her how amazing my life has been since I “won” the title of being Mrs-So-and-So. But the truth is I can’t remember when last I felt as if I won. All I feel is tired and disgusting. I wonder if he ever texts her to tell her what a huge mistake he’s made. He probably wishes he could turn back time. He probably sees me in my yoga pants and stained t-shirt and wonders how he ended up here.
He’s cheating on me. I’m sure of it. And I get it too – he wants to be saved from this life of schedules and potty training; play dates and the mundane. Evidence? I don’t need evidence. The evidence is in the way he looks at me – as if I’m exactly who he needs me to be. It’s such a lie. I know he’s not telling the truth when he calls me beautiful or sexy or the only one he wants to be with. What a joke, I can’t be that wonderful. I mean, I smell like porridge and wet wipes. My fashion sense has no sense at all and the last time I wore anything tight fitting was when I could barely fit into my maternity jeans. The last time I did anything worth noting was when I managed to get the baby to fall asleep before 7pm.
Or maybe he’s not the one cheating. Maybe it’s me. I’m cheating on myself.
I cheat myself of praise, everyday, when I compare my beauty to someone else’s convincing myself that my body is too flabby and my lips are not full enough. I rob myself of satisfaction when I deny my talent and creativity, by believing self taught lies that say I’m not as brilliant as I’d like to think. I steal my own joy when I entertain thoughts that I am not strong enough, not clever or bold enough, not fun or daring enough. And I rob my marriage of its passion and contentment when I go to bed angry at night, irrationally convincing myself that I am unworthy of all of my husbands love and affection.
I don’t know it but I cheat myself of fulfillment when I believe the lie that I can’t be a hands on mother, a fun and exciting friend, a lady on a mission, and a beautiful and desirable wife all at the same time. I am more than enough, just as I am. And on days where I don’t see my worth and my substance, he does.
And that’s how I know he’s cheating on me. My husband, that is. Because he sees someone else when he looks at me.