Our Happily Ever After



This week’s post by staff writer Rachel Brownjohn is about an analysis of the concept of “happily ever after”. 




I watched a movie this weekend (Which I SHANT spoil for you with the title) about the disillusion of a relationship. The main characters were a committed couple on the (not so fast) track down the aisle, but their story was not destined for success.  As I watched the couple’s struggles unfold I knew that there would be no wedding bells, no happy ending. I prepared myself for that tragic moment when everything would fall apart. I could feel tears building in anticipation, there would be no escaping this theatre without Maybelline Great Lash stains all down my cheeks.




In Shakespeare’s comedies you can bet your bottom dollar that there will be a wedding. They serve as the solidifying event that even after the most twisted of plots, everything works out. “I Do,” equates with Happily Ever After.  In romantic comedies the couple makes it, things work out, they realize they are meant for each other after all. These are the happy endings to which I’ve grown accustomed, “You may kiss the bride,” – cue resolution.





But this movie was different. When the unhappy couple finally faced the fact that their relationship had run its course, that it was time to say goodbye; I felt… relieved, hopeful, happy. In the end, these two people had loved each other enough to realize that Ever After wasn’t in the cards for them. In that moment, breaking up was the most loving thing these two could have done for each other. Instead of remaining in an unhappy union, they let each other go. And it was a decision made distinctly with love. Breaking up WAS the happy ending.




I’ve always thought that the end of a relationship was a sort of anti-love story. That if the promises you made each other didn’t pan out, it wasn’t the love that you’d once thought. But maybe I’ve had it all wrong. Maybe, if ending things is best, that is the love story.


As morning dawned, Emma felt full of energy in spite of little sleep due to her constant thoughts of Gabe and their impending first date. “God, I’m acting like a teenage girl with her first crush!”, Emma muttered to herself. But she just didn’t care. This was the first time in years she felt quite like this and she liked it. “Hmm, I wonder what Gabe’ll cook up for our date…”, Emma mused. As her imagination took over in think of just what she’d be in for in a couple of days, Emma prepared for her day and got ready to go to work at the advertising firm she worked for.

A few blocks away in another apartment, Gabe was finishing his first cup of coffee and preparing to pour his second as classical music wafted softly through the air and his laptop hummed waiting for him to continue working on his new book. He had been incredibly productive since like Emma, he hadn’t slept much either and had been already writing for the day since about 6am. He hummed along to the piece currently playing on one of his Pandora classical stations he usually played while he wrote and walked back over to his desk thinking about the night before with. Emma. He grinned thinking of her laugh and the way the little dimple in her left cheek winked at his whenever she was amused. “Yep,”, Gabe thought to himself. “I’m falling hard and fast for this one.” But he had to admit, it didn’t worry him nearly as much as it would have in the past. In fact, he couldn’t wait for his first date with Emma and the only thing he did regret was setting it for Saturday rather Friday. Oh well, there was nothing he could do about it now except be patient and use the extra day to make Saturday perfect. Gabe couldn’t remember the last time he wanted to try so hard to impress a girl, but something told him that Emma was definitely worth it. Gabe smiled and went right back to work writing someone else’s love story while he contemplated the start of his own.