08/31/2012 12:02 EDT | Updated 10/31/2012 05:12 EDT

I Will Always Be Connected to My Lover's Ex


I found it around 4:00 p.m. on a Tuesday. I don't know who was staring harder, it or I, but there it was -- dark, shiny, straight, and mid-length. I'm a blonde with unruly, long, wavy locks; this hair didn't belong to me.

I recently moved in to my boyfriend's pad and with him having a big-boy job -- and with me being obsessive compulsive -- I was put in charge of most of the reorganizing and redecorating to make myself at home. This hair startled me: how could I have missed this spot while vacuuming, everything we own in the apartment, yesterday?

I didn't touch it. I looked at it closely, analyzing its shade of auburn. I didn't find it beautiful, rather quite annoying. I started thinking of the girl that it might've belonged to. What colour eyes did she have? Did she love motorcycles as much as he? Was she exciting? Or just plain vanilla?

In a weird and cosmic way, I realized her and I are connected. I too sat on this couch completely charmed and enamored by his tall-dark-and-handsome ways, when we began dating. Hell, I still do. I love lying on this couch with him, while we listen to Jimi Hendrix at 2 a.m. and allowing our eyes to fill with sleep.

I assume we've both been at least kissed on this couch -- our necks, our lips, our thighs. She didn't know me and I didn't know her, but we both understood one another. We both put ourselves out there, for him; we both wanted to be loved and to love, him; we both wanted to be his. Suddenly, the world felt small.

But, there could only be one winner: and this time, out of my many losses, it was I. I got the "I love you," the travel-with-me-to-France-to-meet-my-family, and the will-you-move-in-with-me proposal. I'm the one who still gets "I'm crazy about u" mid-afternoon texts, or the sympathetic "ça-va Cherie?" and hug combo when I am down.

While rejoicing in this, I became sad, for her. I know she cried when he called it off and swore to never date handsome French men again. Somewhere, deep inside of me, on some level of "sisterhood," I hoped that she found herself her very own him.

That's the thing about exes; it's impossible to keep them in the past. Whether their lingering trail is on your Facebook wall or on your couch, they still appear hauntingly and unexpectedly, like ghosts. At the end, in some twisted way we are all connected to one another -- I to his ex-lovers and he to mine -- trying to make sense of love and life in hopes of finding that someone who you can fall asleep on the couch with, while listening to Jimi Hendrix in the late hours of the night.