i had the perfect alma love story once.
we met at becoming a scot day. he told me that he saw me walking across the lawn and that he had to talk to me. so he said hello. we ate lunch together. we courted each other online all summer. when we moved in for freshman year, we started dating during orientation week.
we were the alma english major power couple for two and a half years.
SOUNDS SO PERFECT, RIGHT?
we're not together anymore. sorry to spoil the ending.
(but like, if you actually know me, this is totally old news. seriously. we've been broken up for like... a year and a half.)
who thought that i could have another alma love story? who envisioned that it would be possible?
it was. and it was nowhere near perfect.
picture this. it's pouring down rain outside and i've walked to bruske hall, which is the farthest dorm from mine, and i'm standing in my friend santino's room soaking wet. santino is showing me music and video games and i'm a little bit hangry so i'm laughing uproariously at everything and we're generally being loud and obnoxious, and then suddenly there's a guy standing in the doorway.
this guy has hair that goes past his nipples and he has double lip rings. really thick snakebites.
and i'm like, YO YOU'RE IN CHOIR WITH ME?
and he's like, YEAH I THINK I AM. and his voice is like, extra deep and i'm a little bit taken aback by how much like morgan freeman he sounds.
he chills with us for a while. i'm still with my perfect alma love story man, but things are rocky and i don't want to admit that. long haired guy tells me that his name is adam. i say hi i'm emily. we shake hands. he lives next door to santino. while i'm getting ready to go back to my room, i peek into his room and see that his bed is lofted to the extreme. i put my hands on my hips and ask him how he gets up into it. he does a series of strange gymnastics, makes it atop his bed, and says, "like that."
a little bit different than "i saw you walking across the lawn and i had to talk to you."
more like "who is this loud annoying chick practically screaming next door? i should investigate."
a few weeks later, my alma love story ends. i'm getting ready for the vagina monologues, wearing angry vagina related shirts, and testing the waters of red lipstick the colour of the blood of men's rights activists. adam and i have started awkwardly approaching each other in choir. choir is three days a week and sometimes before rehearsal, he'll come say hi to me. i want to be his friend but i'm really wrapped up in this whole mindset of oh my god my boyfriend of two and a half years broke up with me, what do i with my life. (the correct answer is fall in love with yourself.)
after the vagina monologues, adam and i are facebook friends. we're talking every day in choir. our huge end of the year choir concert is coming up and we're seeing more of each other. i've torn my meniscus and he's been escorting me to the library and getting me books. one day while i'm reading about john donne, he draws me a picture of a fancy cat and sticks to my carrel. we're becoming fast friends. he tells me he wants a sleeve just like his brother. i tell him i like his lip rings but doesn't that make it hard to kiss someone?
last week of term. we're eating almost every meal together. he doesn't accompany me to the PMA end of the year bonfire after our huge choir concert but i can tell he wants to. during exam week we watch movies in my room and have a heart to heart on my dorm room floor until three in the morning.
we sing together at my brother's graduation. he meets my parents and helps debunk my furniture. i hug him hard and tell him i'll miss him while i'm in england.
when i'm england, he is the only person that i talk to in the states besides my parents.
we text each other inappropriate things all summer. i tell him about my coaching job, he tells me about his foul-mouthed mother. every day that i don't text him, i feel like something is wrong. we're pretty much hard and fast best friends and i can't remember how i met him or how this all came about. he goes up north for a week and i miss him. i go to oregon for five days and he misses me. we plan on me visiting him and hanging out, but it never happens.
after RA training in august, adam moves back into his old room. i meet him in bruske and tackle him. best friends reunited.
adam makes it into big kid choir and i'm still in chorale, medium kid choir. i don't see him much on campus. we make the time to hang out. all three choir rehearsals are fun because i have an excuse to hang out with him. we spend a decent amount of time together, but not too much. at homecoming he meets my parents again and we hang out at PMA. he puts his arm around me and i don't mind it. on halloween, we watch the shining together and i get scared. he cuddles me and offers to spend the night in my room to make sure i feel safe. it doesn't feel weird.
but it is weird because we're not dating, right?
eveyone on campus has noticed that we're best friends that do more than best friends do. we are adamant and wear signs that say BEST FRIENDS NOT DATING to deter people. i can't tell you how many times i said, "oh adam? no, we're not dating." to people.
in october i realise that i want to date him. but i'm scared because i don't think i've quite gotten to the point of falling in love with myself. i'm afraid to enter a new relationship even though my perfect alma love story is already in a new relationship. i'm scared.
so is adam.
i start calling him my long haired man friend, because man friend is different than boyfriend. it catches on. we like it. people like it.
december third we have a super long choir rehearsal (eight until eleven) and adam walks me back to my apartment because it's slippery outside. outside of the door to the building, he tells me that he needs to talk to me. i invite him up and pour myself a big glass of wine because i know that something is coming. we sit on my bed. i put on soft music and gulp down the wine.
adam: what is this relationship?
me: i don't know.
adam: we need to figure it out, because i can't do this.
me: what do you want this relationship to be?
adam: don't pull that. what do you want it to be?
me: i don't know.
adam: bullshit. you know what you want this relationship to be. i've been in relationships like this with girls and it's never ended well. what are we? don't beat around the bush. what is this?
me: well if you asked me to date you, i'd say yes.
adam: (blinks and stares at me)
me: IF YOU ASKED ME TO DATE YOU I'D SAY YES
adam: are you fucking serious
me: ASK ME OUT
adam: WILL YOU GO OUT WITH ME
lindsey, next door and listening through the walls: YAAAAAS
facebook has a field day. my friend riley makes over a hundred dollars in bets that we'd start dating by the end of the semester.
all i can think about is how dumb this is, how adam is three years and two grades younger than me and i'm graduating in four months and then what? but then i realise i don't care because he makes me happy.
we have an unconventional relationship. we talk about weird stuff. i fart in front of him. when i hiccup really loudly in saga he yells "SHUT UP OR I'LL PUT YOU BACK IN THE HOME!" i have a habit of calling him an asshole. he points out my middle class privilege when i complain too much about my minivan.
this is so different than the courtship that my ex boyfriend and i had. the polite relationship that we had for two and a half years. this relationship is real and visceral and intense and vulgar and unexpected.
but it makes me happy.
adam, who i still call my long haired man friend, told me that he began to have feelings for me in april, but he let me fall in love with myself first, and that he would wait for as long as that took.
apparently, it took until december third.
(no apologies for how sappy this was, by the way.)
we don't do formal well.
this is a more accurate depiction of our relationship.