This is Not a Love Story

Hallie Lomax
4 min readJan 29, 2018

If it were, I wouldn’t know where to begin.

Maybe with a, “Once upon a time (past or present), there were a number (maybe two? three?) of entities (human, or otherwise) that interacted (in person, or in one’s imagination?) in a meaningful way (‘Hello, how are you today?’).”

But this isn’t a love story;
I’ve never been in love.
Or maybe I have,
And just can’t bring myself to admit it
Because I don’t want to leave the impression
That I’ve been wrong before.
For what is love
If not a decision
Drawn
From incomplete information.

At 13 years old, I made a promise to my ceiling fan after a routine midnight prayer that I’d say ‘yes’ to any boy who ever asked me to marry him, as it was better to suffer through a loveless marriage — I thought — than deal with the fallout from rejecting anyone crazy enough to want me.

Its only happened 3 times so far, but luckily they all changed their minds the moment my true colors came to light.

Like I said, this isn’t a love story.

I feel the need to reiterate, because my wont for transparency is often interpreted to be a mind game, in and of itself.

I was a Residence Assistant in college, and once had to hold a girl while she cried in my bed for well over an hour because her roommate kept adjusting the thermostat when she wasn’t around, and she’d convinced herself that it was all out of spite. But I think she was just hot. This was Georgia, after all, and neither of them were Southerners.

According to the student handbook, you could only move off campus if you were married or your parents lived within 40 miles of the school. She was engaged to a man twice her age before Spring, as her family lived an Ocean away, and I never saw her again after I helped load the last of her books into the back of his van.

The girls who moved into the room together after her were engaged to one another the last time I checked, so maybe its all in the timing.

An ex once thought he could win me back by finding my roommate online and convincing her to go out with him. I kicked her out after she tested positive for tuberculosis and tried to keep it a secret, and he dumped her the moment I changed my #FacebookOffical relationship status to Single, and she withdrew from the school after our freshmen year. I’m also pretty sure she ate my leftover pizza this one time, and stole my Ben and Jerry’s from the communal freezer, but I like to pretend that I’m not one to hold grudges over such meaningless things.

I also may have put chocolate-coated laxatives in one of the containers. (This part of the story has been classified as Unconfirmed.)

The only thing that rests between the elements of air and earth is the music made when the sounds of longing meet the pity everyone else feels for those being cuck’d.

My first summer on the West coast I dated a guy who worked for Yahoo!, in part because I was at Google and I thought it was a Good Joke. He asked me to marry him while I was drunk for the third time in my entire life, and I said, “Yes, but tomorrow I’ll regret it,” and I did. He followed me to work the next day and searched for courthouses while I waited for my almond milk latte at the campus coffee shop and discreetly tried to convince him that 3 weeks wasn’t enough time to make this kind of decision. But then he just explained the Secretary Problem, and I told him that an N of 2 was unlikely the optimal solution.

You see, his parents were married in Vegas. They divorced 20 years and 7 kids later, but he considered that to be a success by some metric. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

He’d probably make a good early stage investor.

I hear he’s since gone back to N(1).

A Friend of mine was surprised to hear that you could adopt dogs that were already housebroken, and I think that about sums up what most people’s expectations are in the pursuit of love an happiness, versus the reality of a meaningful relationship between two healthy individuals. That its always messy, tiring work before its good, but it’ll all be worth it in the end.

I’m no expert on any of this — because this isn’t a love story and I’ve never been in love — but here’s to hoping that the next person I choose to hold hands with while walking down the aisle of some generic supermarket is, at the very least, potty trained.

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