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Roman à Clef: May 2017

Unbuckling her seat belt, she leaned over the wheel of her car to reach for her purse laying on the floor of the passenger side. Pulling out her lipstick from the heavy black bag, she looked into the mirror above her and quickly glided a bright red hue over her dull pout. Despite it being a cool 70ish Fahrenheit with the sun out, she had just finished drinking a hot chai latte to soothe her nerves.

After getting one of his texts, she hurried from the pond to the supermarket off College Avenue to meet him in the parking lot. But she had waited in an anxious frenzy for 10 minutes before finally seeing him hurrying over to her car.

Unlocking the doors as he made his way in, he opened the door and propped himself into the passenger side as his eyes darted back and forth from the bodies making their way into the grocery store.

“You okay?” she asked as he sat inside the car with his eyes up front. “I feel like it’s been days. I missed—”

He turned to her with a calmness as their eyes met. Sighing, he leaned into her, his hand scooping the back of her head as he pressed his mouth onto hers. She could feel the warmth of his breath, sending a tingle all over her body. His tongue glided gently against her lower lip, sending a sudden quiver to the surface of her skin. Feeling him smile in her mouth, he pulled back, but not before their noses touched as their eyes were stuck on one another.

“I’m okay,” he said, laying his head back on the head rest, looking at her.

“Where’s…” she asked.

“At church, with my parents,” he answered, his eyes on the dashboard of her car. Leaning over, he picked up a car brochure and turned to her. “What’s this?”

“I’m thinking of getting a Jeep — what do you mean church, though?” she asked. “Today’s Mother’s Day. You’re not at church with them then to celebrate Mother’s Day?” (more…)

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5 TED Talks That Will Completely Refresh Your Outlook on Love

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With the way life has been around the world lately, it wouldn’t hurt for us to add more love to the mix. From war, poverty, famine and the fight for human rights, the Burt Bacharach classic, “What The World Needs Now is Love” has never been more certifiable.

Considered one of the most essential components to our life, love is the basis of all things good and beautiful in our world, and true love is a real motivator for purpose and perspective.

While February is known famously as the month that celebrates love in all its manifestations, it’s also just the second month of the new year, which means if you feel a bit polarized in your goals and love life, it’s time to really pick yourself up. We all love indulging in our plans of Netflix and ice cream, but it’s important to recognize that in all its various forms, love is a central part of the human experience and deserves more attention.

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8 Undeniable Red Flags of Incompatibility in a Relationship

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When we seek out partners, we’re looking for someone who will be our true soul mate, our best friend — the who understands us to the core without us even uttering a word. But love and even marriage is not enough to guarantee that a relationship stands the test of time. Couples can be together for a decade, love each other very much, move to a new town, have a child, yet still not be right for one another.

Sure, relationships aren’t perfect and most will often meet with some challenge or the other, but can you really be happy if you ignore the red flags just to ensure history is left untouched?

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Letter from the Editor: What a Broken Heart Can Teach You

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Something I have heard from many in the last month is how heartbroken they have been feeling since last fall. As a feeling I too have experienced while watching the world change every second, it’s no secret that a broken heart can take a toll on the best of us.

And there is nothing more painful than that. Heartbreak takes each of us on a seemingly endless rollercoaster ride, while pulling at the frayed fringe of our very being that leave us weakened and hurt. Yet, as the late Leonard Cohen sings in his popular song, “Anthem,” there is a crack in everything and “that’s how the light gets in.”

It might sound preposterous, but a broken heart has the power to not only motivate and improve our lives for a healthier well-being, but also unleash a great creativity you have never imagined.

If you watched the Golden Globes this month, you might have seen Meryl Streep sharing wise words from the late Carrie Fisher that urged all those with broken hearts to rise up and “take your broken heart, make it into art.”

The Hudsucker was one such venture. While the idea manifested through faith thanks to our Senior Managing Editor, Katherine, the very foundations and motivations of this online magazine were built upon a broken heart.

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6 Telltale Signs You’re Definitely Not Over Your Ex

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We’ve all been there — eating pints of ice cream, belting out Kelly Clarkson’s “Stronger” while in our Snuggie and looking through old photos of happier times. There is no denying that getting over someone who made your life awesome and full of dancing butterflies proves to be one of life’s greatest challenges. But in the aftermath of a breakup, trying to let go of that significant chunk of your life with someone isn’t easy as we’re stuck constantly thinking of them.

According to researchers at Stony Brook University, your inability to let go can be blamed on our “nucleus accumbens” — the brain area associated with reward, which studies suggest fosters the ex-addiction. This simply means since romantic love is a specific form of addiction, when in love and broken up, those emotions can feel similar to withdrawing from a severe addiction.

You might be convinced you’ve gotten over it, but that’s the thing. Getting over someone who has meant so much to you can take a lot longer than anticipated and without a doubt, be one hell of a bumpy ride. So how can you tell if you’ve really stuck a fork in it or are still stuck in your last relationship? To help you make sense of it all, we explore a few signs you are still not over that ex of yours.

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Why You Should Be Working Out with Your Significant Other

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The best relationships are all about finding balance and harmony in each other. Of course, with the constant clamor of our busy lives though, it can be hard to find that — let alone time together.

But recent studies have shown that couples who make it a priority to enjoy a wide range of shared interests and active lifestyles together actually have one of the more healthier relationships in comparison to those who lead a more stagnant lifestyle and separate their pastimes. Research suggests working out with your partner not only strengthens the bond between you two with effective communication, but the sweating side-by-side has the power to help you both gain a stronger connection.

Marriage and relationship psychotherapist, Dr. Jane Greer tells lifestyle website, YouBeauty that when a couple works out together, “the actual exercise itself can physically and emotionally have a positive impact.” As she reveals, both partners not only increase their endorphins during a workout, but equally come away from the experience with feelings of synchronicity, cooperative spirit and a shared passion.

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How You Know You’re Not Ready to Buy a Home Together

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Owning a new home can be an exciting new chapter in your life, especially as a happy couple. In addition to the dreams you two work towards and build together, a new home can bring about a revitalization to your relationship and future. Not to mention as it’s routinely seen as an essential component to the “American Dream,” it’s also an amazing financial milestone that comes with an incredible set of benefits.

However, when you consider everything between the relationship, the finances and jobs you both have, is it really the right decision for you? While owning a home is much cheaper than renting in many parts of the country, you need to be sure you’re financially prepared to take the leap when diving into home ownership.

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Yours, Mine and Ours: Home Decorating Tips for Newlyweds

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You’re finally married — yay! For many couples across the country, that means finally blending your lives as one and moving in together. But while you’ve already considered everything prior to the move, it’s time to take the ultimate plunge and decorate your home with the aid of your spouse. Now here comes the tricky part because even though marriage is fun, it becomes incredibly frustrating when you realize your styles and taste in décor may clash.

While you and your partner might never see eye-to-eye on a particular kind of design, this is where negotiation comes into play to achieve a happy medium. All it takes is a little teamwork and patience.

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