Someone asked me about my first love the other day …. Ok it wasn’t an actual “Someone” as in “another person in a different body someone” but I distinctly heard a voice that was not my own, in my head, that said, “Hey, how about your first love?” And then they sat down with cookies and milk and that is the universal symbol for “I am not leaving until I get a story.”
I assumed they meant the one that came after my first first love ever … which of course is me.
It was really romantic. (the second love, not the one with me … I was easy)
Even if he was an unwilling partner, as in, he had no idea. I just made a bunch of stuff up in my head that involved re-enacting all my childhood understanding of love based on a combo of fairy tales, movies, TV shows, books, and biblical “thou shalt nots.” He was great as Rhett Butler and even greater as “Little Joe.” Yes, I admit it, I loved a cowboy once. It is the painting hanging front and centre in my gallery of shame. The caption reads, “Bonanza???? How pathetic were you?”
Anyway this boy was a friend of my brothers and he would have him over and the three of us would hunt frogs or play 500. I loved him. Often he and I were the victims of my brothers sick mind as in we often found ourselves abandoned, tied to a tree in the forest, having been told that the ants would climb in our ears and eat our brains. Or we were waiting alone in the hay fort for hours waiting for him to get back with the bomb making material.
Facing death or jail really bonds people.
I asked this boy once if he wanted to kiss me.
He said, “no thanks.”
At least he was polite.
And then he punched me in the arm, which basically meant, “I am going to pretend you did not just cheapen our perfect relationship so let’s never speak of it again and just get on with being guys. You are a guy, right?”
I was for many years.
Just a guy that hung out with my brother.
Which I guess makes it kind of weird that I wanted to kiss other guys.
Now I am wondering if that voice in my head was my therapist because this sounds incredibly deep and complicated and like it is worthy of some extra meds or something.
I broke up with that boy. Well he dumped me . . .
He didn’t know about that either.
We “dated” for 3 months. When you are a kid and you sit close enough to someone to count their freckles or notice that their ear is a weird shape, it constitutes “dating.’ It meets all the legal requirements. My brother said we were not dating and that successful, real “dating” is when both parties are aware of the fact they are “dating.” Time would prove that to be crap. I think some of my relationships would have been a lot easier to handle if I had no idea we were even seeing one another. Still, my first love dumped me. I gave him the best months of my life and he threw it all away without a word. He just stopped talking to me.
I wrote a bunch of really morose poems. I didn’t have Pinterest or anything but I did post the poems on the wall of the barn where all the cows could see them. I think I got several hundred “likes.” Cows feel your pain man. They also appreciate great poetry.
Years later he asked me out … after I had breasts. Amazing that suddenly he could “see” me. I told him we couldn’t get the magic back no matter how hard we tried. He said, “oh ok,” and tried not to cry. I watched him walk away forever, my whole childhood innocence in his Snoopy back pack . . .
. . . (these are extra so that you have some time to cry and get a kleenex for your nose)
I think he dated my brother for awhile.
I went on to love again but it was never with the same wild abandon or childlike enthusiasm. I became an adult.
Life hardens you like that.