I was always oblivious to the things you never were; it was a recurring problem between us. I never noticed how you brushed your hair this morning, slaving over those rich dense curls to make them seem more fluffy and neat. It never really occurred to me that there is that much of a difference between using this blue eyeliner you love and the black one you keep for special occasions. I had to wait until you told me, and even then I just pretended to understand because I saw how much it meant to you.

You kept blaming me for being self-involved, for never caring enough to notice these small changes in your style of clothing, your new shoes, the different style of eyeglasses, or the fact you braided your hair differently.

I never noticed.

You were always oblivious to the things I never were; this was the real problem between us. I loved you with my heart even when I didn’t realize you changed your makeup or wore new earrings. Even when I missed the tiny details that you were so careful to point out to me. You never noticed I love you despite your flaws.

But when you left me, I noticed more things than you ever did. I noticed how your smile, usually radiant and proud, curled downwards into a sad pout you tried your damnedest to hide. I noticed how you brushed your hair differently that morning to hide your puffed eyes. I noticed how a loose lock of hair covered your forehead and shielded your eyes, hiding the tear that slid down your perfectly blushed cheek. I noticed how it dangled from your full lips that featured a brand new lipstick. I noticed how you turned to go, shaking your head, bouncing on new pair of shoes.

I noticed.

* * *
Written as a response to the short story “The Haircut” by Mary Morris.

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