The One Who Got Away

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The throws of young love can be blissful, but as Nicholas Sparks once wrote, "the greater the love, the greater the tragedy when it is over". So, I re-live this moment for the hopeless romantics. I re-live this moment for the girls weeping alone in their bedrooms, only praying for the strength to get out of bed and face the sunlight.

It's rare in life that you can pinpoint moments where you knew you loved someone, knew you were about to lose someone, or simply knew your life was about to fall apart. These feelings are more often times than not, very gradual. Well, I am eighteen years old, and I can pinpoint the very moment life as I knew it ended.

It was extremely late in the downtown scene of a popular college town... so naturally, the streets were strewn with underage college students, those looking for a good time, and those just trying to find where they belong. I was supposed to meet up with a friend of a friend. I had already gotten the "scoop" on him so that I knew I wasn't going to have to hang out with someone I wasn't comfortable with.

Here is what I knew about him prior: He was in a band, wore tight jeans, and was absolutely beautiful. That was enough for me.

We had exchanged numbers and while walking aimlessly around the streets of downtown, I had my cell-phone in one hand while fumbling through my purse with the other. He was trying to tell me how to get to where he and his friends were.

After a long duration of stumbling through the wrong places, he finally said, "I think I see you!"

That's when I raised my head from the inside of my purse, no longer caring about the gum I was trying to find, and saw him across the street. That, ladies and gentlemen, is the moment life as I knew it ended.

He had chestnut hair and velvet eyes. The street lights were beaming on the left side of his face, but there was enough darkness for him to retain a mysterious complex. I began my trek across the busy street and as I focused my eyes, I saw the most beautiful smile I have seen and will ever see...and I knew right then and there that I would compare every single person to him hereafter and no one would ever come close. I knew he would be seared into my memory from this day forward. And most importantly, I knew right then and there that I was either blessed beyond belief or inevitably doomed.

I found that night that I was one of those people who was looking for a place to belong... and when I saw him, I knew right where I belonged. A relationship between the two of us won't work as of now for various reasons...but that isn't the point.

The point is, that no matter what happens next, I'm grateful for the moments we had. He will leave for Nashville and I will leave for Athens... and in a sense, he will be the one who got away.

I think when someone causes us heart-ache, it's natural to see them as the victor and yourself a pitiful charity case with mascara streaming down your cheeks. He changed my way of thinking. Perhaps being free and victorious is all according to personal definition.

I will begin college in the fall with a new understanding of what passion truly is. No longer will I try to find comfort in the arms of those that don't care. I now know that there is something greater out there... I have now gotten away from insignificant moments... for I know what it is like to have the meaningful ones. I know what it means to care about another's happiness far beyond your own. I know love.

I am the one who got away.





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