An Abridged History of My Love Life (So Far)

Everyone you meet is either a blessing or a lesson.

First love: (17 y.o. - 19 y.o.)

It all starts with a directional swipe of the finger. You think in your head, “Eh, he’s got potential... he’s probably cuter in person.” A message here and there, but you don’t feel that spark you’re looking for.

A few months down the road you get a call from your best friend asking to come pick her up from a date with a guy who’s name definitely sounds familiar. Apparently, he was excited for you to show up and crash the date.

Next thing you know, in an anxiety colored haze, you’re sneaking out of windows at midnight and being greeted by a warm passenger seat, the smell of a freshly lit Marlboro, and a boy singing you all his favorite songs.

If you close your eyes you can still hear the smile in his voice when he spoke.

Days, months, weeks, go by and you’re dazzled and completely overcome with the strongest feelings you’ve ever had. For the very first time you feel your weight move behind three words. “I love you.”

He becomes your safety, comic relief, your happiness, your crutch. He becomes the only voice you want to hear... even when your parents are begging you not to move out at such a young age. All you can imagine is falling asleep wrapped in what felt like forever, and waking up to thoughts of future. But living together is so much harder than you thought, and it’s getting harder by the day.

A year has gone by and you’re starting to forget about sneaking out that window and all of the passion you once had. It’s replaced with the smell of week old dishes in the sink, and the litter box that needs to be emptied.. your solace is that happy face walking through the door.

Slowly that same face starts to come through the door later and later, and he doesn’t have the same sparkle in those eyes that used to shine when they fell upon you. You can see it fade, dull, and fizzle.

Another 6 months pass and you don’t remember what it feels like to not be tired. You start every day wondering what would happen if you disappeared. You can’t stand the feeling of tight clothes and everything seems to require so much effort. It takes you three hours to build up enough energy to shower. You feel as if everything around you is dissolving. He doesn’t even look at you anymore, and coming home is a chore now. Until one day when he confirms your fears. That you’re not enough, and that you’ve been replaced.

This love is a wound that continues to re-open itself throughout the years, and although it’s almost healed over, you’ll probably get drunk one night and knock it on something and then you’ve gotta start all over again.

Second love: (20 y.o. - 21 y.o)

Your days now consist of the smell of burnt gas station taquitos and stale coffee. Every day you feel stressed, lonely, hopeless.

Your mood is influenced by the occasional cute guy that comes in for a snack or a pack of cigarettes.

You begin to observe patterns of regulars, particularly a group of guys that come in twice a day around 6 am and 9 am. There’s a dark haired one with big, smiling, ice-blue eyes who calls you darlin’ and says things to make you blush. You catch yourself looking out the windows watching for the big silver dodge with Idaho plates.

One early Friday morning starts with an exchanged business card and a swift “call me when you’re off.” The rest of the day your mind is buzzing with possibilities and you’ve never been more excited to clock out.

Six hours later, you’re walking up to a small, gray, townhome garage door, and being greeted by two familiar faces, one with big blue eyes. You’ll never forget how at home you felt.

Imagine your surprise when they offered you a job with their company, while eating buffalo wings.

You find yourself back in that little gray townhome, but this time, there’s only you and one other person. A bright, enthusiastic, and forbidden man with whom you felt undeniable electricity. Morally and physically, you were at war with yourself. But when he touched you the lines blurred and softened. His kiss was a cold burn.

Every day was filled with the boys, who you eventually grew to love. But you were especially full with one who changed your outlook on everything. You had never imagined someone so wise, so intelligent, so caring, or so sexy. He became your boss, your mentor, your desire, your drive, and you became his mistress. The lines that were once blurred have disappeared completely now.

What used to be waking up at the crack of dawn, was now going to sleep at the crack of dawn in highly threaded hotel sheets and a bathrobe to match, and then waking up to 4.5 star views of Minneapolis from the comfort of plush beds.

Your nights now consisted of an interchangeable bump of either cocaine or adderall, vodka cranberries, and top rated meals from the best restaurants in the city you’ve now come to love.

This newfound life you’d been enjoying so much would be interrupted periodically by visits from his wife, who was busy being pregnant back in Idaho.

He was always very good about making these slight inconveniences up to you.

But everyone warns about mixing business with pleasure, and they’re right.

Months go by, and your love grows stronger and stronger every day. You’ve never had anyone treat you the way he does. Never had anyone care. Even though everyone abandons him, he is the most amazing thing to happen to you, so you hold tight.

He goes home more and more now that he has a daughter, and you don’t get paid anymore. He tells you there’s more work to do, but you know that this ship is sinking. And fast. You wonder if you should’ve jumped when everyone else did. You start to feel more and more alone.

Now the office you once called yours belongs to someone else, and every trace of him being here is gone.

His wife found out about the affair, and you haven’t heard from him since.

This is the kind of love that makes you feel grateful for spending so much time with someone who holds such a big piece of your heart, but also makes you feel ashamed that you love someone who has already promised their heart to someone else.

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An Abridged History of My Love Life (So Far)