An Excerpt from “An Online Romance”

On a muggy late October night in South Louisiana, Ezra Lee Toussaint was sitting on his sofa scrolling past profiles of ladies on a dating site. He lived outside of New Orleans, Louisiana, and couldn’t seem to find any ladies that interested him nearby. So he increased the distance parameter on the app and continued searching.

Ezra was a disabled thirty-seven-year-old. He stayed in a one-bedroom apartment and of course lived off of a government pension from Social Security Disability. The reasons for his disability were that he was schizophrenic and later became diabetic, due to side effects from his medication.

Around the age of thirty-four he had lost a lot of weight, but still needed to take his schizophrenic medication as well as monitor his blood sugar and take insulin shots for the rest of his life.

Because of the cost of his medications and supplies as well as their side effects in addition to the debilitating mental effects of Schizophrenia, he decided it would be much more practical to draw disability and keep his medical benefits instead of being at the mercy of employer-sponsored health insurance.

He spent his waking hours working on his 1985 Jeep Comanche pickup truck, riding around at night, listening to his scanners, watching videos, or reading online.

He had all the time to do whatever he chose, whenever he chose, but his life was incomplete. He was missing the love of a good woman.

There was a good woman in his life about five years prior, but she called it quits on him out of the blue.

He spent a good while getting over that relationship, but then he decided to get on several dating sites and put himself on the market.

On this night he wasn’t having much success with the app.

It seemed that the only women who wanted him were well below his standards and the ones that met his standards all eventually ghosted him.

Ezra was getting ready to give up on these apps and find an alternative way to meet women when he saw her profile.

Her name was Sadie, she was 31 years old and from rural Marshall County, Alabama.

He studied her profile extensively and realized that she fit his standards exactly.

She was an SSBBW with a very pretty face, long flowing reddish-blonde hair, sparkling blue eyes, and the most beautiful curves.

On her profile she stated how she is indeed a big lady and if any potential mate of hers cannot deal with that, then just not waste their time and don’t even contact her. She stated how she wanted a man that would treat her like a queen, hold her by her waist, kiss her just because, and love her for her. She also stated how she is an excellent cook and despite her size, she’s the one to take and meet your family. Her profile then stated how she never smokes, or uses drugs and only drinks alcohol on special occasions. As her interests, she posted that they include hanging out with her family, riding around at night, swimming, playing games on her phone or tablet, and cuddling but only with the right man. She finally said how she is on disability because of her weight, but that means she can take care of herself financially and doesn’t want any man’s money, but rather his time, loyalty, affection, and love. Her height was listed as five feet.

Even though he wasn’t actually in her presence, Ezra felt immensely giddy as his heart skipped several beats.

For a few minutes he simply stared with great admiration at her pictures.

During those minutes, Ezra was going through in his head how he would write the perfect message for her, “Hey. I don’t know how to begin this, but let me first say that I am very picky about whom I would date. However, you seem to exceed my standards by far, and not only that I think you are beautiful and sweet. I want to get to know you more and if you are the right one for me, I would indeed treat you like a queen, hold you by that sexy waist of yours, shower your beautiful face with kisses just because and yes I could love you for you and let me say that you are indeed very lovable. I’m already crazy about you and if you would only know how giddy I feel just by looking at your profile, maybe you would somehow like me too. I know I am in Louisiana and you’re in Alabama, but gosh durn it, it wouldn’t matter to me how close or far you were, for you I would find a way to make it work. There aren’t any worthwhile women where I am, but you, well…you are more than worthwhile, you seem so perfect for me! I look forward to corresponding with you, so please give me a chance!”

Ezra sighed as he tapped the send button.

He then set his phone down and walked into the kitchen and took his medication.

Afterwards, he tested his blood sugar and saw that it was low, so he drank a cold can of Wild Cherry Pepsi.

He then turned on his scanner and listened as two towboat captains were coordinating their movements on the Intracoastal Waterway. He listened intently until he heard his phone go off.

A chat head appeared with Sadie’s picture.

Ezra took a deep breath then began to read the message.

“Hey. I’m really touched by what you told me. I also read your profile and you seem like a decent guy and yes I would be open to you getting to know me. I want to get to know you as well. I also think you’re really cute! It’s quite okay that you’re all the way in Louisiana because there are no worthwhile young men around here who are willing to pay attention to me, but I’m glad you are. You made me blush a whole lot when you told me that my waist is sexy. And yes, I am really happy that you are that you’re willing to make this work. Maybe you are the young man of whom I have been praying about. I hope you are serious about loving me for me because I am bigger than I appear in my pictures. I do weigh a little over four hundred pounds. When most guys find out exactly how big I am they ghost me. You seem really sweet, so I hope you are somehow different. I hope you would still want me now that you know my true weight and I promise you that I have an even bigger heart. Please write me back and let me know how you feel.”

Ezra’s heart swelled with joy that the young lady whom he was already catching feelings for was mutually interested in him. He knew he had to make it clear to Sadie exactly how much he was attracted to her. So, carefully, he typed back, “I’m so sorry all those other guys ghosted you but it’s their loss not yours. I hope it is also my gain and I apologize if that sounded wrong. There is something I want you to know and I pray you don’t think I am a pervert, but here goes: I am exclusively attracted to bigger women. There is just something about them that drives me wild but in a very good way. And if she has a pretty face like yours, I’m even more attracted. A skinny woman doesn’t have that effect on me. And a skinny woman wouldn’t ever make me happy but someone your size would make me the happiest man there is! I meant what I said when I told you how I think you’re beautiful and sweet. I won’t ever ghost you, but I will honor you and cherish you if you indeed let me! Please don’t ever ghost me either though. You are the most beautiful woman I have ever seen and you have such a sweet and pure heart, that I want you even more now. I just hope this continues.”

A minute passed, then Ezra’s phone alerted him to another incoming message from Sadie. It read, “Oh, I don’t think you’re a pervert because you’re attracted to bigger women. Actually, I’m glad you are because you’re really cute and sweet and if you didn’t like bigger women you probably wouldn’t be talking to me right now, so it’s quite all right. Don’t be so hard on yourself. I know you’re falling for me and I will admit that I am falling for you as well, but I have to make sure you are right for me. I am indeed attracted to you physically and I think you are really sweet as well, but I need to know most of all that you are a Christian and that you are a humble gentleman. I’m almost sure that you are are the latter, but I need to make sure that you are also the former. If you indeed are, then you will have the keys to my heart. But I must know. Let me close by saying that I hope you are because I really do like you and I could see you making me happy. Please let me know.”

“Why don’t I call you and explain it to you? It would be easier to say it verbally than to write it all down.”

“Sure. I bet you have a cute voice.”

They then exchanged phone numbers.

Ezra then called Sadie.

“Hey you!” She answered.

“Hi,” Ezra said.

“Well tell me all you need to say.”

“Okay, here goes: I am indeed a Christian and have been since my teen years. There is something else you must know about me and that is I get disability. First I got it for being schizophrenic, which I got saved while I was recovering from my first mental breakdown. A family member presented The Gospel to me and I surrendered to it. Most of my family is Catholic, except for this family member, and I always noticed how he was closer to God than the rest of them, so I hung on to his every word. It was the best choice I ever made when I got saved! The medication I take for schizophrenia caused me to eventually become diabetic. I was heavy from my twenties until my early thirties then at age thirty-four, I lost the weight, mostly from strict dieting because of my diabetes. I allow the Lord to direct my paths and I acknowledge Him every step of the way. I would also be in a lot of trouble without Him. If you ever meet me, you will see that I carry a SwissGear backpack and a small Igloo cooler everywhere I go. I carry my medication and diabetic supplies, as well as a few cool personal gadgets in my backpack, and I have a few cans of soft drink as well as my insulin in the cooler.”

“I can tell that for sure that you are a Christian and I am immensely happy about that fact! I’m so sorry about your disabilities, but maybe they make you humble, or at least I think they do. Could you tell me about the other stuff you carry in your backpack? I hope it is all legal stuff.”

Ezra replied, “Well, some of the stuff I carry may not be legal in New York or California, but it is perfectly legal in the rural South. I have my tablet with its charger, a scanner radio also with its charger, a Leatherman multi-tool, a Swiss Army Knife, three different tactical flashlights one of them has a USB-C charger the other two run on disposable batteries, my Bible, two flash drives, a power bank, and a scientific calculator.”

“That’s neat. But why do you have three flashlights?”

“Well one is for general purpose lighting. The other has a regular white light but also a red light for use at night such as fishing or looking for worms or just looking around in a car while riding and not disturb the driver. The third one is for self-defense, it is very bright and has a strobe feature that can disorient an attacker then I can hit him in the head with the flashlight while he is disoriented. There’s a lot of crime in Louisiana and my psychiatrist won’t clear me for a concealed weapon permit, so I had to improvise. As you can see I like to be prepared.”

“My Daddy carried a Leatherman on him everywhere he went, but he willed it to me when he passed away.”

“What did he die of?”

“He was big like me and couldn’t get his blood pressure under control, so four, almost five years ago, the Sunday just after Black Friday, he was out hunting with the new rifle he had just purchased and had a stroke out in the woods. We have a scanner too and heard EMT’s talking about him on it. He died hours later at the hospital.”

“I’m so sorry and he seems like he would have been a good man.”

“Oh he was. Maybe he would have liked you.”

“What was he hunting for?”

“Wild hogs. He wanted to roast one for Christmas Dinner but had to work up until Christmas, so this was his only time off, until Christmas Eve.”

“Oh, that sounds delicious. What was his job?”

“He worked at a gun store and he loved to hunt in his free time.”

“If scanners upset you, I won’t play mine in front of you. I know it must be traumatic to hear one go off.”

“Well, that’s very sweet and thoughtful of you, but it doesn’t bother me.”

“What do you listen to on yours, anyway?”

“Mostly boat traffic. If that isn’t too active, I listen to the fire departments.”

“And why do you carry that Leatherman and Swiss Army Knife?”

“Just so I can help myself or others should the need arrive. It seems I am always using them to fix something at my church. I see them more as tools than weapons, and I do enjoy helping others.”

“Now you sound like my Daddy, but I like it.”

“I know you know that I am a Christian. I hope you think I am also a humble gentleman.”

“Yes. I do, but I just had to make sure you were first.”

“Yay.”

“You seem happy.”

“Well, the young lady of my dreams thinks I am a gentleman I would say that makes me happy!”

“So, since I am the young lady of your dreams, why don’t you make me yours?”

“How do you want me to do that?”

“Ask me, silly.”

“Okay, I need to know your full name first, so I can do this right.”

“It is Sadie Claire MacBride. What’s yours?”

“Ezra Lee Toussaint.”

“That’s a neat name.”

“Thanks.”

“Okay, are you going to ask me?”

“Yes: Sadie Claire MacBride, will you be my girlfriend? I don’t have much to offer you, but I do promise to give you my time, my loyalty, and my affections!”

“Of course I will, and you’ve just made me a very happy lady, Ezra Lee Toussaint! I hope and pray that this is just the beginning!”

“It is just the beginning and I hope and pray that you are the one because I cannot picture anyone better!”

“I hope you are the one as well and I cannot wait to meet you in person!”

“How about we try to Thanksgiving week. I’ll save some money from when I paid on November 3rd.”

“Sure. But I’m too fat to drive myself so you’re going to have to come to me.”

“That’s fine. And don’t be so hard on yourself because I think you’re the most beautiful lady ever! Anyway, I have a 1985 Jeep Comanche, but it runs just as well as any truck made today. And I will gladly come to see you.”

“You’re so sweet and I think you’re the cutest man I’ve ever seen!”

“Thank you!”

“Hey, what time is it?”

Ezra looked at his G-Shock, then answered, “10:44.”

“I have a doctor’s appointment in the morning, so I need to get some sleep. I too have high blood pressure because of my weight. It’s under control, thanks to the medications, but I need routine monitoring.”

“You do get disability as well, or at least your profile says so.”

“Yes, I get my Daddy’s survivor’s benefits. I use them to pay me and my Momma’s bills and the utilities. The trailer and the land are paid for, thank God!”

“Yes. Thank God indeed.” Ezra paused then continued, “There is something I want to tell you tonight, and every night before we go to sleep.”

“What is it?”

“Good Night Tidings.”

“Okay.”

“Here goes: I wish I was in your presence to lovingly give you hugs and kisses goodnight, then gently tuck you into your bed. But I also pray that The Good Lord watches over both of us tonight and every night as we sleep. Finally I pray that we are together forever, because I only want you and no one else. Now, you get you some rest and I will take my medication.”

“That was very sweet and just know that I desire and pray for those very things as well!” Sadie paused then continued, “I will text you good morning and I will call you when I am out of my appointment. If you want we can spend some time then.”

“Okay. I will be waiting. I’ll probably be doing laundry tomorrow, but I’ll make time for you.”

“I know you will.”

“Okay, good night.”

“Good night.”

Ezra took his medicine then went to bed happier than ever.

Likewise Sadie went to bed filled with more joy than ever.

They dreamed about each other all night long…

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