Love is complicated. Remember when throwing Skittles at your crush was socially understood as flirting? Nothing says “I kind of like you” like a solid Skittle stoning. The thought process behind this time-tested courtship technique never went away, it simply evolved. The assault eventually turned into calling the boys stupid, which soon after settled into a civilized, “Nice jorts, jorts boy. Where’d you get those jorts, the…Jorts 'r' Us? BURN!” While watching your hopefully future beloved perform this most delicate swan dance of love, it may come into question whether or not your love is real. Luckily for you, we're here to help you filter out the ones you truly love from the ones you wish would just leave you alone and go back to the jorts store. Here are 10 signs that your love is real:
1. You write "Mrs. Brody Hotguy” all over everything. Your notebook, your homework, your hand. Not to mention your dad's birthday card. It was not his favorite b-day sentiment.
2. Your attempts at chivalry are killed by awkward. At a school football game, clearly the most perfect atmosphere for love to blossom, you spring your long-planned act of chivalry on your adored date, offering her your coat. But in a tragic display of brain failure, “Would you like my coat?” becomes “Do you like my goat? I mean coat. And would, not do. Would you like my…thank you for just walking away. I LOVE YOU”
3. Every other word out of your mouth is your soulmate's name. "Jeffrey eats lunch every day, too." "Jeffrey LOVES Cheetos!" "Are you guys Jeffrey mad at me Jeffrey because I won't stop saying JEFFREY?" Your friends have resorted to poking you with a stick every time you say the dreaded name. And you've resorted to wearing stick-resistant body armor.
4. “Dude, we finish each other’s sentences.” Not necessarily a sign of love: Sorry, dude. She might just be impatient and steering you to the point.
5. Songbirds suddenly appear every time she is near. And perch on her shoulders, striking a defensive stance evocative of Voldemort about to whip out an Avada Kedavra. Sooo apparently she's got trained attack birds now? (But you love her anyway!)
6. You approach him with a long-practiced swagger. Your eyes meet. He smiles, you smile, and as he leans in for a welcoming embrace, you nervously sneeze and vomit simultaneously, all over his new shirt. This is caused by what's cutely/misleadingly known as "love butterflies."
7. She just vomited all over you: an opportunity to talk with her for longer than usual! You will spin this into an excuse for an inside joke, saying things like, “Look out, here comes pukey!” (Until she makes you stop.)
8. You lovingly read his Facebook status updates aloud to your friends. Especially the one about eating a sandwich at lunch. Ham and cheese? Only a brilliant sexy genius would dream up such epicurean combinations! You've grown accustomed to the feeling of a lot of people blankly staring while nodding in pretend agreement, but you just. can't. stop. Talking about him!
9. There are stars in your eyes every time he graces your field of vision. Then the light fades, and then you hear a loud thump—and then everyone is helping you up off the floor.
10. You guys are reading this list together right now, giggling like fools. Hi, congratulations! It's love.
Have you ever been in love? How did you know?