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I Would if I Could
Let me start off by saying that I’m a man’s man. I don’t go on the internet or talk on the phone everyday; I’d much rather go fishing or paintballing. I don’t share my problems or vent; I keep to myself most of the time. I don’t play dress up with my little sister, Nadine; I’m too old to play along. And most importantly, I’ve only loved once; then, I went back to who I was.
I was so in love with you, I remember how we met. Do you realize my chemistry teacher couldn’t even get me to memorize Boyle’s law? Chemistry was one of my worst subjects until you came along. Chemistry became my favorite class; you became my favorite everything.
You were wearing a black, long sleeved T-shirt. We were still in a transition from summer to fall, but you were wearing long sleeves. Why did I remember what you were wearing that day? I remembered everything you wore.
When you sat next to me, you said you came from Oregon, and it would be much colder than it was here. I commented, uninterestedly, “That’s cool.” The next day, you didn’t sit next to me, but I was okay with that.
I remember you sat next to Jordan Diaz, and then I felt a pang of jealousy. I didn’t know why, but I thought it was because I liked you. Jordan invited me to his pool party the next week, and I was surprised to see you there.
You were wearing another long sleeved shirt, but this one had navy and white stripes. I went up to you and asked you about Oregon. You had so many stories, so I sat there and listened to you talk to me until it got dark.
When it was hot, I took my shirt off and asked if you’d join me for a swim. You said you couldn’t, but didn’t explain much after that. I knew you didn’t want to talk about it, so I sat and listened to you talk some more.
You asked me to say something about my life, but I didn’t have anything to say. You asked me what I did for fun. I told you I liked fishing. And you did, too.
Our first date, we went to the lake and fished. When you caught a trout, I was happy for you. You jumped into my arms and challenged me to see who would catch the most fish during the day. I didn’t let you win like I should have, but you kissed me when I took you home anyway.
We dated for six months. For all those six months, you wore long sleeved shirts. I remember that we were just fooling around when my dad left the house. I lifted your shirt off, but then you stopped me. We got in a big argument, because I knew you were hiding something important from me. You begged me to stay and cried into my bare chest. Then you told me that you used to cut yourself before you moved here. You lifted your shirt to show me your wrists, and I cried with you. Then I pressed my lips on all your scars to heal them. After, you let me make love to you. I told you that I never loved anyone before, and you told me there was a first for everything.
When February came around, you visited your mother in New York. I told you to bring snow back for me, and you laughed and said you’d miss me. You were coming back on Valentine’s Day. While you were gone, I bought you a dress as a gift. It didn’t have long sleeves, but in my eyes, you pulled anything off.
When you came, I pulled the dress out, and you loved it. You wore it to the dance, and everyone stared at your scars. You didn’t care.
I drove you home. Then a drunk driver swerved through the road in the opposite lane. I tried to stay away from him, but he hit us in a head on collision. You died.
It’s fall again, and I’m the one wearing a long sleeved shirt to hide the scars from the car crash. I do believe I loved you, though I never knew how it was supposed to feel. I wish I could turn to my right and see you reeling in a fish. This time, I swore to myself I would let you win. That is, I would if I could.