Sometimes It’s a Long Trip to “I Love You”

Some people plan romantic moments to say “I love you.” Some people blurt out the words in a moment of spontaneous passion. Then there is yours truly, who shows up unannounced with a half-empty box of wine, no sort of plan in her mind, driven mostly by fear that waiting one more day would destroy my sanity. [If you want the full intro, look here.] Would he even be home? Maybe he’d open the door and I would say, “Hi! Guess what? I brought you some shitty wine! Also, I love you!”

I rang the doorbell. Harry’s friend, Zach, answered. So much for the Tell-Him-At-the-Door plan.
“Hey,” said Zach, completely unfazed to see me, “What’s up?”
“Uh, hi Zach, is Harry home?” I asked, feeling like I had been transported out of the city, out of the 21st century, to a bygone era when this sort of thing was normal. The concept of “just drop by anytime” is completely bizarre in present-day New York City.
“Yeah,” Zach replied opening the door wider, “He’s right here. Harry, look who’s showed up.”

My boyfriend arose slowly, shirtless, from the coach. He looked slightly bewildered, like he was trying to recall a forgotten communication.
“I was in the neighborhood,” I explained, “My phone is dead so I figured I’d take my chances and stop by, see if you were home.” The TV was on, paused on a frame of the HBO show Rome. “If I’m interrupting a boys’ night, I can totally leave. Really. I know it’s weird I’m here completely out of the blue.”

“No, no, no,” said Zach. “Stay.”
“It is awesome you’re here.” Harry said, putting on a shirt and giving me a kiss, “A lovely surprise.”
The boys welcomed me with open arms, offering me beer, asking if I could stay for dinner. Still, something felt off.  The episode of Rome turned back on, I sat struggling to differentiate characters who all have the same haircut. It was a nice distraction from the Tell-Him-You-Love-Him task set before me.

Suddenly, Harry paused the episode again, “I have to tell you something.” My heart skipped a beat. These words are often a precursor to the three big ones I’d been obsessing over. Were Harry and I so compatible, so on the same page, that the same thoughts were plaguing both our brains? Was he about to confess his love for me while sitting in his living room, his friend on the futon opposite us?

Harry spoke, “So, well, Zach and I dropped dica right before you got here. Yeah. It hasn’t hit yet, but it’s about to.”

This was not, in a million years, what I was expecting to hear.

Perhaps you don’t know what dica is. Perhaps because I made it up. Let’s just say dica is exactly like the psychedelic drug known as “acid” but with one very important exception: dica is perfectly legal in the USA. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. Therefore, it is not at all questionable that I am sharing my boyfriend’s infrequent recreational dica use. He and Zack were celebrating some pretty extensive achievements between them. They deserved a trip, really a vacation. But when time and money are scarce, well, you take any trip you can. Moral of the story: Harry doesn’t have a problem, I don’t have a problem, and I hope you don’t have a problem either.

I stared at him in disbelief and then burst out laughing. This is my life! Of course the moment I resolve to declare my feelings, I find the object of my affection in a completely altered state of mind! Of course! Just goes to show, you can’t plan this sort of thing! Or you probably can, it’s just me who completely fails; and true to form, fails in an utterly comedic manner.

One thing was for sure, I absolutely couldn’t say anything that night. It wasn’t exactly hard to restrain myself. It turned out to be a fun night, watching my boy and his best friend get utterly ridiculous. More entertaining than any show on HBO. I fed off their buzz, aided by copious glasses from the box of wine. In the wee hours of the morn, the effects of the dica mostly worn off, Harry and I collapsed into bed and slept oh-so-soundly.

When I awoke, morning light was peaking through the curtains. Having no concept of time, I peered at the clock by the bed, 9:30 AM. Much later than I was hoping, I’d have to leave soon. If I didn’t say “I love you” now, I’d have to wait several days until I saw Harry again. My heart started thumping loudly in my chest, making my decision before my brain. I was going to say it, now.

I could feel Harry awake next to me and wondered if my heart was beating so loudly he could hear it.
“Are you still tripping?” I asked.
“No,” he said, “That ended hours ago.”
Silence filled the next moments as my brain and heart hammered away. Just say it. Just open your mouth and say it. SAY IT!
I took a breath.I love you.” I said, “I do. Even when you’re tripping on dica.” Yep, that is how I told my boyfriend I loved him. No lead in, no preface, just completely unceremonious and first thing in the morning.
“Oh yeah?” he chuckled, “That’s awesome.”  He put his arms around me and squeezed me tight, “That’s fantastic,” he said and then fell silent.


A deafening silence, it hung in the air like humidity does on New York summer days. Instead of freaked out, I felt strangely zen. I had said what I needed to say, the matter was now out of my hands. The silence extended. Lying in his arms but feeling positively unattached, my brain calmly assessed the situation: So this is what unrequited love feels like. Huh. Guess I totally misjudged this one. Hm. Well, now starts the ticking time bomb. How long do I give him to say it back? If he doesn’t say it back in-

Acutely aware of his slightest movement, I felt Harry inhale before he exhaled, “I love you, too.”
Phew. I grinned, relief now bathing everything in new light, “Well you certainly paused long enough for me to doubt it!”
“I’m sorry,” he said earnestly, “You did catch me totally off guard though.”
“I know, but I had to say it! Actually, I’m kinda glad you made me lie in silent agony for five minutes,” he hugged me tighter, “I never want to take this for granted.”


There you have it. That’s my story of saying I love you first. I’d love to hear other people’s “I love you” stories! Please share them in the comments section!

About New York Cliche

NYC lifestyle blog by Mary Lane. Events, adventures, epic mistakes, dating, life, humor. A 20-something trying to make it (and make out) in the city of dreams.

21 thoughts on “Sometimes It’s a Long Trip to “I Love You”

    1. haha! That was basically the next thing he said, “Yeah, I kinda knew you loved me when you didn’t leave last night.” True, and yep, I’m taking it as a good sign for sure.

  1. Awesome story – yay for you and yay for love. There is truly no better feeling in the world. I felt happy reading your blissful mission to express your feelings.
    The only ‘I love you’ story I have is with my husband. He was the first person I ever said it to. That was probably why the following oh-so embarrassing situation occurred.
    He was the first one to tell me that he loved me. I was taking some extra time with it, until one afternoon, looking deep into his eyes, I suddenly blurted out “I love you”, Oh, my, what? where did that come from?…so startled by what I had said I quickly added “deep inside me”. WHAT….was I thinking!?!?!?!?
    He smiled and laughed and said “Yeah, babe, I love being deep inside of you, too.”
    Not necessarily a story we told at our wedding, but yeah. That was my first and only ‘I love you’ story. I made it count! 😉

  2. The first time my now fiancee told me he loved me I believe we were in his car on our way home from a movie and he told me that while it’s only been two weeks…he thought that he was falling in love with me. Now of course I freaked out and was all “omg what a weirdo, it’s only been two weeks and he’s pulling the ‘L’ word on me?!” But honestly, I felt it too, so I said it as well even though I was really freaked out about how soon we were confessing our love for each other….now seven years later…we’re planning our wedding! Haha!

  3. This is lovely, apart from the dica but each to their own, It makes me excited about the next and hopefully last time I will fall in Love!!

  4. Haha! I’ve heard this before, but this is perfect. I was anxious for you while reading it, even though I knew it ended well.

  5. That’s a sweet story. And I love the part where he said that he never wants to take this for granted; that shows how important you are to him. I wish I had my own I love you story, but I’m still waiting to find out what real, true love feels like.

  6. Sometimes the best “I love you” is the one that catches you off guard! Great Post – thanks so much for sharing. I say I love your to my greatest someone every morning and man does my love continue to deepen for him:)

  7. If my chums knew this was the sort of stuff I was reading, they would definitely take the piss out of me. But I’ve got to say, I don’t care…

    Because even though I probably shouldn’t, I really like your blog. Both the stories and the way you write them. If it’s not already in the pipeline, you should seriously look into making this a TV series!

    I’d watch it anyway 😉

Comments are closed.