“I don’t love him.” Haley mumbled to herself. She’d stood frozen staring at the shower taps for the last ten minutes as the warm water ran over her body. For months Haley had been in a state of confused pain. Something had been rotting away inside her and it had just now, while she was getting ready for work that the cause of her aching soul was revealed to her. “FUCK!” She shouted into the rushing water. “Are you ok?” Jordan yelled from the bedroom, “Yeah sorry, I’m fine.” Haley yelled back. But she wasn’t fine, nothing was fine.
Jordan and Haley had been together for over three years and everything had gone well. Jordan had a good job in finance, kept himself trim by cycling and had always been good to Haley. They had met through Haley’s sister Kirsten, who knew Jordan from their cycle squad. Kirtsen introduced the two after hearing Haley complain of never meeting nice guys. Before Jordan, Haley had dated a string of wannabe tough guys, each of them breaking her heart in one way or another. Jordan had seemed perfect to Haley at first, he supported her and got along with her family. He was always caring and gentle, he encouraged her to be her best self. And so, for the last few years she had stayed with him. They moved in together, went on holidays together, got to know each others families. It had seemed like a match made in heaven. There had been some problems, but they had all been trivial and easy to deal with. Simple things like who does which chores and whether Jordan spent too much time cycling. But they were always able to talk to each other and find a compromise.
For quite a while Haley had thought that Jordan was the one. She was content and comfortable. Jordan had even broached the subject of marriage with her. But now… Well what now? Haley got herself ready for work and kissed Jordan goodbye like any other day. She kept her mind busy on the long train ride to work by going over the schedule for the day and preparing for her 10 o’clock meeting. She kept the issue from her mind until the end of the day. Haley was riding the train home, when she noticed a lady, around her same age, smiling at a huge diamond engagement ring. That is when it all came rushing back to her. Tears began to slip form Haley’s eyes as the guilt, shame and misery began pulling at her. It felt as though the whole world was coming to an end and that it was her fault. She forced her attention out the window examining the city as though it were an alien landscape. Although she tried she could not stop the little voice in the back of her head screaming “What will I do? What have I done? What is wrong with me? What is wrong with me? He is so great why don’t I love him? What is wrong with me?”.
By the time Haley got home she had regained her composure. Jordan wouldn’t be home for at least half an hour so she started on dinner. As she peeled the potatoes she started running through scenarios in her head, how would Jordan react if she told him? What would she do if they broke up? What would happen to Jordan? Whether she loved him or not, Haley cared for Jordan. Haley set dinner around 6 pm, expecting that Jordan should have been back by now. He might have been working late so she chucked his dinner in the microwave for when he got back. She then sat herself on the couch and put the news on while she slowly began her dinner. As the news babbled on in the background, Haley slumped to the couch. Her mind raced as she considered her feelings and decided on a plan of action. She weighed up her options. Could she learn to love him? He was everything she had thought she wanted. It would be easy to leave things as they were. She was comfortable, life was easy, plus the thought of having to break his heart repulsed her. At the end of the day she knew she had to tell him, it wasn’t fair for her to keep going if she didn’t love him. With a heavy heart and a long sigh she resigned herself to her confession. She would do it tonight after he got home from dinner. Haley got up and washed her plate as she ran through the coming conversation in her head.
Finishing the washing up Haley headed back to the couch, it was almost 8 pm now, where in the world was Jordan. The news was discussing the days city traffic, some accident on the I55 was causing mayhem, when the phone rang. Haley, expecting it to be Jordan calling to say he was stuck in traffic, headed for the phone. When she answered a deep male voice asked “Hello, is this Haley Robinson?” “Yes this is Haley” she replied. “Haley, I am Senior Constable Daniel McGregor from the Hellensvale Police Department. I am very sorry to be making this call but there has been an accident. Your partner Jordan has been hit by a large semi-trailer near South Barrows this afternoon.” “Oh my god JORDAN! Where is he?! Is he ok?” Haley began to scream into the receiver. The Constable took a deep breath before continuing on “Haley, I am very sorry to inform you that Jordan has passed away….”. As the constable went on Haley seemed to detach from the world, it all seemed to slip away.
For the third time that day Haley’s tears began to flow. She felt a deep pang of bitter sadness well up deep inside of her as she fell to the floor and began to sob. She cried for Jordan, she cried for her shame, she cried for not loving him and cried for losing him all at once. In a single moment Haley had gone from hating herself to hating the world. She hated it for being unfair, for taking the wrong person. “It should have been me, I am the one who couldn’t love him, I am the one who is broken, it should have been me, it should have been me….”.