Lovesick

Lovesick

A Story by Philip Muls
"

Boy meets girl, a classic case of rejection

"

A week after my sixteenth birthday, I am sitting in a classroom with twenty-two other boys pretending to listen to a Latin teacher. Our minds are everywhere but here.


I for one cannot stop thinking about Connie. She is the reason for the lovesick state I have been in for weeks now.


She is the epitome of perfection to the sixteen-year-old me. She has hazel brown eyes and a classic face of beauty. She is wearing a navy school dress accentuating her figure. For a moment, it makes me wonder whether the school has intended this effect when making girls wear a uniform. With her hair in a boy cut, she is simply irresistible. I do not fight it, I am powerless. I recognize a higher force.


She walks with an air of carefree confidence, seemingly unaware of what she does to boys and men. With hindsight, that was a pretty naive thought on my part, I now know that she was aware of her powers. Pretending she wasn’t just made it perfect.


It starts with a smile.


Dexys Midnight Runners are playing their signature song Come on Eileen as a backdrop to the epic scene that follows. I am looking at Connie walking towards me along with two other girls all wearing winter jackets, woolen mittens and hats. She looks like an angel. She is laughing out loud because of something her friend said. Her gaze crosses mine and it seems to me that her smile is now directed straight at me. She simply says “Hi, don’t you just love this song ?”.


That’s it. That is all that happens. I am in awe.


Awe is called the eleventh emotion, beyond the basic ten known by science. Awe plays on the boundary between pleasure and fear, inspired by great beauty or the incomprehensible mystifying. It causes us to completely forget ourselves in a moment of great wonder, feeling the presence of something greater.


Yes, right on the mark. I am in awe.


And I am not equipped to deal with it. I manage to say a profound “Hi, yes I do” back at her and she gives me a coy glance that will stay with me forever. A few days later, I even ask her out in a burst of supreme confidence. She hesitates for a brief moment…


That moment lingers on in my eternity. It is a moment in which all is still possible and yet you feel that it is not you but fate that will prevail.


She said no.


Later in life, I learned how to see rejection as a useful step in the pursuit of victory. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger and all that.


But back then, it took me apart. When it comes to drama, there’s nothing quite like unrequited love. For weeks I did not sleep or eat. It seemed to me that the meaning of life was found and instantly lost again.


If rejection hurts, rejection without a reason is a killer. It tortured me in the most intense way that she denied me the chance to  that one date. To my endless frustration, guys who were not paralyzed by her loveliness did manage to get on a date with her. And they did it in a casual way, nothing to it.


A lesson in love right there ! She needed a cool guy, a guy she had to fight for. Why did I not know that ? Why was this not genetically pre-arranged in my moves ? Why did all the males that preceded me let me go empty-handed to an unfair fight ?


Thinking back about it so many years later, it makes me wonder. Why was I in awe looking at her and not at other girls, who were in fact even more beautiful ? Why did her smile hold that much power over me, like I felt her sweet innocence was out of this world and I had to pursue her with everything I got?


Exquisitely painful as it was, I wouldn’t want to have missed it. This First Love which did not go beyond “Hi” and yet took on legendary proportions in my memory, inspired me to look for experiences that brought me the same feeling of bewilderment and wonder. But somehow, I never quite reached the same high octane level in my emotional fuel and probably never will.


By design it seems… you can only be truly lovesick once.

© 2015 Philip Muls


Author's Note

Philip Muls
A new version is uploaded, thank you all for your comments!

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Featured Review

A couple really great things here Philip. That last line, killer. The moment she rejects him, devastating. You capture the feel and gut-wrenching anticipation and nervousness of this situation well. Where I think you're lacking, however, is exectution.

This story feels very "explanatory." A lot of extra stuff is included, but it doesn't feel like it's necessary. The extra long song quote, the explanation of the ten different kinds of emotions, the careful examination of the characters emotions in a "play-by-play" style throughout the story, it's all just a bit too much information. One of the things you do well is convey a lot with few words. When you write, "She said no," we feel the devastation the character feels because we've all been there, you don't need to explain every moment of it to us.

Again I'll say that your writing does an excellent job of resonating on a very human frequency, I just think it'd be so much more effective if you got the knife out and trimmed some of the fat away to give us a more healthy dose of the real-ness.

Posted 4 Years Ago


3 of 3 people found this review constructive.

Philip Muls

4 Years Ago

Thanks Hal, I made some changes based upon your feedback. Kind regards, Philip



Reviews

I am not used to reading ''long'' stories but it got me hooked just because I think I had experienced this in my life. Good for teens and young adults. I love stories like this that I can relate. Keep it up!

Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Philip Muls

4 Years Ago

Thanks for the kind words!
wow phil, this story is just perfect. I've never read anything about rejection quite like this. i usually don't read stories coz to be honest they get rather boring half way through and they sort of lose you somewhere in the mix, but this..had me glued from first line right up to the end. very well written and i'm sure we can all relate coz even girls go through this, when you really like a guy but the feeling just isn't mutual and it's even worse for us coz you never really know if he likes you back. in this case i think it's better when a girl just says no straight up coz at times we tend to think it's better to give a guy a couple of dates first then say no, as though giving him false hope is a lesser evil. The ending was just perfect, like the cherry on top. They say first cut is the deepest, guess nothing else can ever equate to that first rejection, first heartbreak, and ultimately..we really can only be lovesick once. Loved it. :)

Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Philip Muls

4 Years Ago

Hi, thanks for the feedback. Indeed, giving false hope is not a lesser evil but more painful in the .. read more
There's only one thing wrong with this story, it's Dexy's Midnight Runners...other than that this was an epic story of adolescent love and raging hormones in full effect.

Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Philip Muls

4 Years Ago

Dexys...you are absolutely right...thanks
Dream Weaver

4 Years Ago

Great piece of writing here my friend...and you're welcome.
I enjoy this very much Philip. It brought back high school memories. Males are not the only ones who get rejected, females too :( Great write.

Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Philip Muls

4 Years Ago

Thanks Shei, it happens to all of us
Interesting and a good read. Nice pen upon this.

Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Philip Muls

4 Years Ago

Thanks for the kind words.
I do enjoy the inner-monologue. Reading the thoughts that goes through a young man's mind, as he gets rejected...so sad. I don't know why I feel just a tad bit guilty reading this...I could feel the little "paper cuts" already. Taking me back to that awkward place in time. High school! At 16, I...sigh...it was a time of...learning...let's just say that. Thank you for this wonderful read, taking me, on an emotional journey, down memory lane.

Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Philip Muls

4 Years Ago

Thanks for the constructive feedback
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K.
Wow, I really love this! It's fantastic. As a teenager, I feel as if i can especially relate to this, which makes reading this even more enjoyable. There are so many lines that I am in love with so I will try and only post two or three:

"Awe is called the eleventh emotion, beyond the basic ten known by science. Awe plays on the boundary between pleasure and fear, inspired by great beauty or the incomprehensible mystifying. It causes us to completely forget ourselves in a moment of great wonder, feeling the presence of something greater. "
This is just so fantastically written, I don't even know how to explain my fascination with it. Just know how much I appreciate this paragraph because my words can't do it justice!

"If rejection hurts, rejection without a reason is a killer."
This is just a great line, so true.

"Thinking back about it so many years later, it makes me wonder. Why was I in awe looking at her and not at other girls, who were in fact even more beautiful ? Why did her smile hold that much power over me, like I felt she was out of this world and I had to pursue her with everything I got?"
Somehow you have taken the words straight out of my thoughts and I am grateful to you for that. It is such a strange thing to think about. As I am entering my freshman year of college, I can look back on the boys I was seemingly in "love" with freshman year of high school, and I laugh. Thank you again for writing this, it was great. Can't wait to read more of your stuff when I have more time.



Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Philip Muls

4 Years Ago

Thanks Kassie, very constructive feedback. I welcome your thoughts on my other stories. I will also .. read more
I know this moment all too well lol.

Eloquently written if I may say so, it's relatedable, very human and the right words relayed pains of the heart with purpose.

Cheers!

Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Philip Muls

4 Years Ago

Hi Phillip (with 2x l)
Thanks for the kind feedback.
Philip (with 1x l)
i had this feeling, but it was in 8th grade...Judy Fracaro...damn....lovesick, such a crush...she never knew---

was hoping to tell her at a grade school reunion, but the year before it, she died of cancer...

she was cool...and so pretty but i figured she would just laugh if i ever told her how i felt...

this brought me back there...but also to high school and Latin and how bad i was at it.
you create good atmosphere and get us there...i rarely have time to review stories...and am not really qualified to, but i like it...

wish you posted poetry, also.
j.

Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Philip Muls

4 Years Ago

Thanks Jacob for the relevant feedback. Very sad to read that your 8th grade crush died of cancer. T.. read more
This is a really great short read, perfect for a short journey! I particularly like:

'Thinking back about it so many years later, it makes me wonder. Why was I in awe looking at her and not at other girls, who were in fact even more beautiful ? Why did her smile hold that much power over me, like I felt she was out of this world and I had to pursue her with everything I got?'

Most have been through this, but everyone's has a slightly different take (and name). I am going to think about my turmoils over a drink tonight!

Well done!

Posted 4 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Philip Muls

4 Years Ago

Thanks for the kind feedback, glad it made you think...

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Shelved in 4 Libraries
Added on September 20, 2015
Last Updated on December 10, 2015
Tags: lovesick, awe, power of a smile, bewilderment

Author

Philip Muls
Philip Muls

Grimbergen, Belgium



About
Living in Europe, but travelling frequently in US and Asia. I love to combine what I experience during travel with observations and thoughts about the human condition. more..

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