I went to my high school reunion last night. It was awkward and bizarre and amazing. Just as you would imagine something like that would be. Combine a lot of alcohol and thousands of conversations starting with, “so, what have YOU been up to?” and you’re bound to have a good time.
L and I got quite a few folks commenting on this blog which was flattering and somewhat surprising. Needless to say, I got a few questions regarding my lack of posting lately, so here I am. I wish I could give you some awesome update like L with stars in my eyes and butterflies in my stomach. I cannot. I am in the same place as always. Working way too much, hating online dating with a fiery passion, and only eyeing those that are completely off limits. So yeah, I’m in a super good place… per usual.
Instead of talking about my inability to be a normal, functioning adult who dates or whatever, let’s talk about HIGH SCHOOL REUNIONS!!! At the end of the night I ended up taking my high school boyfriend home. But before you get all “WHAT THE SHIT?!” on me, let me explain. He came back to my friend’s house with five of my besties and we just stayed up late, drunkenly shoving food in our faces as we talked about how odd the evening had been.
It’s strange to walk into a room full of people you haven’t seen in 10 years and try and figure where they belong in your heart and brain. There were the boys that took us to dances, the girls that were scary and mean, the people I couldn’t place for the life of me, my favorite teacher and many more. And then there was the boy who camped out in my heart, leaving an etched out space for himself, as first loves always do.
There’s nothing as ridiculous and magical as your first relationship. You fumble through hand holding and the first kiss. Figuring out how to act at school with each other is a tightrope walk, as you’re also navigating how to be a real human. My first relationship was with a punk rock kid who had lip piercings and was in a band. My mom disapproved immediately and my dad just remembers him as the “super tall kid who was ridiculously skinny.” To me, he was a dream. He played guitar! And had dyed hair! His snake bite piercings made him JUST enough of a bad ass that I tried to learn what flirting meant, and started practicing.
Our first kiss was outside in the rain at the house that was everything our parents feared and everything we loved. Two of my best friends happened to be dating two of his best friends, so it only made sense to join in on the fun. We spent a year or two holing up in the top floor of this parentless house, playing video games and being ridiculously in love.
I’ve touched on how blissful naïve love is. You go into it without any preconceived ideas or fears, except maybe what you saw in 10 Things I Hate About You. You figure each other out through hours on the phone, talking about nothing as you had just seen each other ALL DAY at school. There wasn’t all that stupid adult shit that got in your way, and as long as you made it through the school week, you could get into trouble on the weekend. It was new and exciting and so god damn cliché. I remember listening to hours of Jimmy Eat World, New Found Glory, Blink 182 and Saves the Day, relating those words to my emotions, making up drama for the sake of our first fight. I journaled endlessly about our relationship, struggling over whether or not he’d pay attention to me after his shows. I’d make him mixed CDs that were filled with pop punk love ballads, because that music really seemed to understand the struggle and beauty that was first love.
Heaven knows I was a complete idiot in all of it. I didn’t know how to be a good partner and was always nervous that who I was (and what I looked like) wasn’t enough for him. Granted, my fashion choices were terrible and I had a haircut that was cringe worthy. Still, I waded through the mess of hormones and emotions and loved this boy as much as a 15-year-old heart can love. It was beautiful and messy and silly. It was puppy love and it was perfect.
While the relationships I have had since my high school boyfriend were much more “real”, there is nothing as vulnerable or pure as the first time you kiss a boy on a park bench and he holds your hand.