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Love Story, Sorta

Fact: not all love stories end with “happily ever after.”

The following story is true and even though I say the ending is sad, it’s not sad, not really – its just life. The names have been changed to protect the innocent. As for the not-so-innocent, I'm pretty sure you can figure out who she is.

In college, boy meets girl.  She's everything he's not – free-spirited; laid back; soft; careless.  Where he has goals, she has warm fuzzy dreams.  She walks around with a Frisbee in one hand and a Jane Austen book in the other and never bothers much with her studies – her laughter echoes all around him as he toils away.

They have late night chats – he's studying and she's writing poetry. He's crazy about her. He's young; eager; excitable; invisible. She only has eyes for the troubled soul from California – a brooding young man oozing angst and music. A guitar player; her first heartbreak.

She's not very nice to the boy. Not because she is a mean girl – she's just annoyingly clueless – airy. Young. She won’t master the art of delicate female sensitivities until many years later when she learns to cry silent tears, rather than let them flow through roaring girlish sobs.

One day, they go ice-skating. He holds her hand and tries to teach her. She's hopeless at it. They laugh and fall. She screams and squeals and grabs on tighter.

That night, he makes his move. Fervent passion kisses. She kisses back. Caught in a moment – and then caught by a friend’s mom. The girl is mortified. She can't believe she encouraged his affection when she did not fully reciprocate his feelings.  It confuses her.  She’s heartbroken – devoted to the pain of her heartbreak – how dare she cheat on her aching with cuddles and kisses and giggles.

She's not heartless, but she doesn't handle herself with grace and finesse all the time. She stops speaking to him. She focuses on graduating and moving to Oregon. He has one more year of school.

After he graduates, he catches up with her again. He's passing through Astoria, Oregon. She meets him for dinner, casually mentions her boyfriend, gives him a hug and wishes him well.

Nice Guys Finish Last.

Here's where the bittersweet justice comes in.

He looks her up a third time.

They spark conversation. She'll be passing through his town in January. She adjusts her travel plans to visit him.

Sparks fly. Conversation is easy. Everything feels natural. The girl is overcome with how foolish she was to not see him before. He's matured. He’s still kind. He embodies every gentlemanly trait she finds lacking in every other man she's dated.

He doesn't make a move. Doesn't even hint at it.

She wonders: Am I not pretty enough for him anymore? Does he hate me for how I treated him? Did I open up too much, let my crazy flag fly a little too high?

They meet up again on her last night in town. The sexual tension is thicker than frozen butter in the air. Knees touch, ankles – she touches his arm, his shoulder.

Her self-control is maxed out. She leans in for a kiss. He turns his head.

Fail.

His eyes are closed. He says, "I turned my head because you live in Connecticut and I live in Florida. No way are we going to start a long distance relationship. I don't want you to think that something is going to happen. It's just not."

She kisses him anyway. Again. This time, he kisses back.

It’s perfect.

Here's the sad ending:

She's back in Connecticut touching her fingers to her lips every once in awhile still thinking back to one of the best kisses of her life – sweet, passionate, hungry, tender. 

She feels like something icy and hard melted inside of her – it melted and she feels the space it used to occupy.

And now, he's the one who got away.

Broke Dick Dad January 21, 2012 at 12:31 PM
Brilliant! Captivating word patterns.
SolarPete January 21, 2012 at 01:21 PM
I met a puppy long ago in my past we fell for each other My mother caught us doing what Mother nature had in store for us as we matured.I was never allowed to run with her and if caught tossed in the pound. Spent my free time in summer camps and the cage because I was deeply in love with her. I lost in the end and wrote this poem A BIRTHDAY IS A WONDERFUL DAY TO REFLECT ON THE PAST WHEN TIMES WERE HAPPY AND SAD TO LOOK AT WHAT YOU’VE DONE AND TO SEE WHERE YOU ARE GOING AS ANOTHER YEAR PASSES BEFORE MY EYES I SEE WHAT I HAVE MISSED WANTING TO HOLD YOU AND EXPRESS MY LOVE THE LOSS OF YOU IS TOLD EACH TIME THE SUN SETS ITS BEAUTY CASTS YOUR SHADOW IN MY HEART AND ITS LIGHT IS ONLY FOUND IN YOUR EYES TO SOMEONE VERY SPECIAL ON HER BIRTHDAY NOT A DAY GOES BY THAT THE THOUGHT OF YOU SURFACES IN MY HEART IN THE PAST, YOUR MEMORY HAS KEPT ME INSPIRED HOPING YOU WOULD APPEAR IN MY LIFE FOR EVER THE BIGGEST MISTAKE IN MY LIFE WAS TO LOSE YOU NOW MY LIFE IS LIKE AN EMPTY SHELL MY SOUL DWELLS LOST FOREVER IN THE MEMORY OF YOU MY HEART CRIES OUT YOUR NAME IN HOPES OF SHARING IN YOUR SOUL AGAIN
SolarPete January 21, 2012 at 01:21 PM
I’ve searched for someone to make me happy, but to no avail! What I’ve discovered is that there is only one That has a tie to my heart Yet she is bonded in someone else’s life I grieved the loss of the past And the future that will always be empty I will always want to share the devotion I have for her All the days of my life Yet I will always dwell in the sorrow Of never finding true love beyond her heart As I know she is the one that dwells with-in my dreams And will always bring tears upon my heart
Robyn Greenspan January 21, 2012 at 03:00 PM
Send him the link to this post. It's better to risk rejection and put closure on the past than to always live with that seed of regret. You never know.
Barbara Effros January 22, 2012 at 05:23 AM
Kudos Maureen, for sharing this story. Brought tears to my eyes for all "those moments". Thank you!
George E. Mulligan January 22, 2012 at 07:39 AM
I agree with Robyn. If he is the one and if he feels you are the one, why not make the move to warmer territory? If you rent and don't own a home / condo, what is to keep you? Job? You have writing skills and talent. At the very least there is potential free lance and supplemental income, if you feel you are tied to a desk? Do you care more about your job and local connections, including family, then willingness to transplant & take the chance? Don't move. If you feel this man is the one and believe you will committ for life with him and that he is likely to committ for life with you ... why hesitate? You (or the person / people you write about) have History. Each of you knows the core personality of the other. IF YOU HAVE NO DOUBTS ... IF YOU HAVE DOUBTS ... Do what you believe is in YOUR BEST INTEREST Just as IMPORTANT: Do what you believe is in HIS BEST INTEREST I let mine get away .... there were circumstances thrust upon me, where it was NOT in HER BEST INTEREST! Will you look back in 30 years ..... Will you hook up locally and be happy? Will you hook up locally and have reqrets and questions? Will you make the move and fail? Do you you feel and intellectualize is best? You appear to have reached a point in your life ... where there is priority and perhaps preoccupation with wanting ........ That time long since passed for me ... I am not unhappy ... yet ...if it were not for rotten political people ...
Dr. Alfred C. Whitehead January 22, 2012 at 01:59 PM
Hello Maureen... I thought I would seek clarification on your "Likes" in life i like champagne and nachos. Nachos...is that with or without cheese? i watch people’s mouths move when they talk to me and judge if they are a good kisser Why not just kiss them them and find out? i like to write with fine-tip Sharpies because i think it makes me look confident Maybe it makes you "feel" confident? i bite my nails Hands or toes? i think doing the dishes is a very lonely chore That's why they invented paper plates! i think “autumn” is the prettiest word in the English language. Bella is in the Italian language i believe in love – or, at least something that resembles love, but i don’t trust this idea of forever. Better to have loved and lost then never to have loved at all.(the best of both worlds) i really want there to be a God Just Believe... God will do the rest!
amy January 22, 2012 at 03:59 PM
grow up.
Herb Morrison January 22, 2012 at 05:26 PM
Oh, the humanity! (LOL)
Bobbie January 22, 2012 at 06:41 PM
Are you kidding me!?! Why would you write stuff like this and share it with EVERYONE! This is for your journal, not for the public. If I was that guy or you I would die of mortification! Why would you publish this!?
Molly January 22, 2012 at 08:18 PM
Interesting set of comments, as always. Well written and well executed. Can't wait to read what's next :)
Maureen Dixon January 22, 2012 at 10:09 PM
Wow - what a diverse set of comments this week! Thank you all for taking the time to leave a note! I really appreciate the positive feedback and insights! Dr. Whitehead - Nachos are not nachos without cheese, and I used to bite my fingernails but I finally overcame that terrible habit! Amy - I'm growing up as fast as I can - older every year, ya know. Bobbie - I published this article only after seeking permission from "the boy" himself. I wouldn't want anyone to die from mortification. It's one of my more personal pieces - but it's real. Mr. Mulligan - I don't care about anything as much as I care about love. Still, the line between foolish and courageous is thin and difficult to walk. Barbara and BNA - you're my two favorite new commenters! Thanks for the love!
Robin Carlson January 22, 2012 at 11:20 PM
How are we sure this is the end? Seems like there might be another chapter.
RONALD M GOLDWYN January 23, 2012 at 03:02 PM
I once had a love like your's, only it was a house in a community where our parents strongly disapproved. How can I still have such regrets that we let our parents talk us out of it? I can still draw the floor plans from memory which is now about 40 years old. What would my life have been had I moved my family there? Yes, I still dream of the house that got away, but thankfully not the woman that I married in 1961.
eswanson January 23, 2012 at 03:39 PM
You left me wanting more...great column!
George E. Mulligan January 23, 2012 at 03:57 PM
"Still, the line between foolish and courageous is thin and difficult to walk." 20/20 Hindsight. If it works If it doesn't Even making the right choice can turn out badly. Conversely ... I guess one has to "sorta" sort it out? Ms. Dixon: Thank you for your postings and feed back.
Maureen Dixon January 24, 2012 at 12:55 AM
Hi Robyn, Thanks for your comment - just wanted to let you know he read it. I blogged about the full behind the scenes story if you are interested: http://notme2night.com/?p=1122
Dangerous Linda January 25, 2012 at 11:57 PM
Life is wonderfully rich, which you captured beautifully in this post! XO

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