It’s very quiet over here, like I am home alone, but I’m not. I am downstairs, on the sofa, under a blanket, and my husband is upstairs, asleep, with his girlfriend. He – they – are asleep because he thinks I am fine, because I have told him I am fine, because I have told him that Pretty Woman is on TV and he knows that I always watch it when it’s on.
Except it’s not on.
I am trying to be chill about the fact that his girlfriend is staying over, but the truth is, I was more chill when our fourteen year old asked if his girlfriend could stay over, because at least then I knew that what I was feeling was horror. But the way I feel now is a confusing mix of fear, envy and desire – goosebumps prickle all up my arms, but my cunt is slick.
I’d like to pretend that I said I was okay with this because I love my husband, and because I want him to be happy, but that’s not really true. I pretended to be okay with it because that’s the kind of woman I’d like to be. I dream of being flat – flat stomach, flat temperament, flat emotions – when in fact I am tempestuous, uneven. Polyamory, it seemed to me, was like a diet – just a question of mind over matter. I wanted to prove I could resist envy the same way I can resist chocolate mousse.
But, just as I have cracked over chocolate mousse before – have woken in the middle in the middle of the night craving it, and snuck downstairs to feed spoonful after spoonful into my mouth by the light of the fridge, so it is with jealousy.
If he’s lucky, I won’t crack until she’s gone.
But I might not last that long.