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Firsts

Life is full of firsts. The first time you ride your bike without training wheels, your first day at a new school, your first friend, your first boyfriend or girlfriend, your first date, first kiss, first time feeling like you know your place in this world.

I’ve always been a “boy crazy” kind of girl. In kindergarten I developed a crush on this one boy. I even blew him a kiss. In the third grade I met this guy that I followed all around the playground and sat with every day at lunch. But that was when I was younger. When I switched schools and was in the fourth grade, I gawked at every cute guy I saw. Not only because they were cute, but because it also gave me a sense of maturity. I had an older cousin and she was always talking about guys at her school. And having even the slight idea of what she was talking about made me feel well, mature.

During my first month at that new school I spotted this boy. He was in my homeroom. And instantly his sleek brown hair, ominous brown eyes, and bad-boy attitude had me hooked. But that wasn’t all of it. He was funny too, and nice, and just so…cool.

Now before when I was younger, when I had a crush on a guy I got over it in a couple of months or maybe by the end of that school year. And sometimes I would look back and wonder, “What on earth was I thinking?” But that didn’t happen with my fourth grade cutie. I mean I never regretted liking him. He was definitely hot. But sometimes it’s just good to move on.

Then I entered the fifth grade. And everything changed. That was when I met the boy that would make me part of the person I am today. He started off as just this guy in two of my classes. He had curly brown hair, glowing hazel eyes, and freckles that seemed to dance across his ivory skin. He was a major rebel, hilarious, nice, and everyone loved him. And he had a major crush on one of my best friends. And even after a few months passed and he got over her, my other friend was still after him. And too bad for me, she wasn’t shy like myself. She would walk right up to him, flirting, laughing, and hugging. Then after a few months passed she lost interest. And I was the only one still lovesick for him. I always treasured anytime this god of a boy paid me any sort of attention. And he always made my stomach twist and turn into nervous knots that never truly came undone.

Then we were in middle school and he quickly disappeared into the crowd of popular eighth graders. And I was left to fawn over him like a little puppy. In my eyes, this boy was an angel. An angel that I wanted so badly, but knew I could never have.

Then one day, in sixth grade, we were at P.E. and my same friend who had fawned over this boy just the previous year decided to humiliate me in front of everyone there, including him. And I honestly never truly forgave her for it.

I remember her screeching at the top of her lungs that I loved him. And then that was only the beginning.

He whirled his head around at the same moment my face turned beat red and a nearby friend of mine turned to her.
“Dude! What the heck?” She scolded my friend. “That was so not cool.”
My friend smirked. “What? It was funny.” She said grinning. And then she turned to me, “At least he knows now.”
“But I didn’t want him to know!” I hissed.
She shrugged. “Sorry.”
“Whatever,” I growled, and I stalked off, keeping my hood up and my head down for the rest of class.

All too soon, everyone at the school, even the teachers! Had heard about my so-called “friend’s” announcement. Everyone teased me. And even after my “secret” had spread like the plague across the school, this boy continued to ignore me. I was never anything to him, but now I was less than nothing. And that broke my heart.

I tried to get over him. And was successful for a bit, but then the school year ended and I came back the next year still in love with him.
I met another boy then, in seventh grade. A true “Mr. Perfect” he was brilliant, teachers loved him, every single girl at my school was head over heels in love with him, and all the guys thought he was awesome. And why shouldn’t they? He was funny, cute, intelligent, charming, and athletic. And I had a crush on him.
Over time, my friendship with him grew.

“Hey,” I ventured to him one day.

He grinned that famous smile of his, nearly knocking me off my feet. “Hey, emo girl.” He said in a slightly teasing tone.

I winced a bit. The only reason I had that reputation was because I wore black all the time, and scribbled depressing quotes on my arm in sharpie. My jet-black hair didn’t help any either. But this was all only because of last year. With my friend… And that boy… I rolled my eyes.
“Shut up.” I said in a teasing tone, but that was the exact opposite of what I wanted him to do, I wanted to stay here and listen to his golden voice forever.

“What?” he said grinning.

I stuck my tongue out at him, like a five year old would. “I’m not emo.” But even I knew it was a lie.

He looked at me skeptically. “Oh really?

I smirked in an almost daring way. “Yes, really.”

He shifted his gaze to my left arm, which was covered in quotes written in sharpie. I yanked down the sleeve of my jacket.

“Still not emo?” he questioned with his astounding smile.

I scoffed. “Yup.”

He shrugged. “Ok, whatever you say, emo girl.”

I was about to reply with a witty comeback, when one of his friends called him over from across the classroom. He turned and waved smiling like the perfect guy he was. And then he turned back to me.

“See you later.”

I smiled. “See you later.” And then I watched him as he walked off.

Things were like that for a while. Easy. But then my same friend who had humiliated me at P.E. spilled my secret that I liked him, and my heart was in pieces once again.

I confronted my friend about this but she denied the entire thing. “That’s crazy,” she said. “I’d never do something like that.” But of course she had said the same thing about that day at P.E. even though it had been plainly obvious that she had done so.

For a long time I was practically dead inside. Twice guys I had loved so dearly had rejected me. I felt unwanted, foolish, ugly, and useless. I would cry myself to sleep too many times to count, I wanted to through a brick at the world, and slug it in the face. I wanted to scream until everybody heard me and understood how I felt. But at the same time, I kept these emotions buried. It felt ridiculous to me, to react so strongly. I felt like I was making a big deal out of nothing. People all over the world suffered things so much worse than heartbreak, what right did I have to cry and write depressing poems every minute of my life about heartbreak, when there were people out in the world starving? But sometimes I felt so annoyed at the world and its cruelty that I wanted to just bury myself in a dark hole and die.

Over a course of time, I started to feel better. I began focusing harder on having fun with my friends, and homework. I was going to move on. But once in a while, lying in my bed at night, my mind would flicker back to those moments, the things I’d said, what I’d felt, and I would cry.

But finally a new beginning emerged. I was still in seventh grade and my friend and her twin brother were having a birthday party. When I walked through their door, there was my friends’ brother, a boy I didn’t know, and a guy in my homeroom named Chris.

My friend and I went out on the trampoline, and slowly more people started showing up. About fifteen of us crammed ourselves onto the small trampoline, everyone falling over. At one point we caught this guy over the fence staring at us, and we ducked down and shared a fit of giggles and whispers. Later we went to play hide and seek. I was hiding behind a van with three other people. Chris and my friends’ brother circling us like cats. We moved left, and they moved left, we moved right and they moved right. Finally, we tried to outrun them and get inside, but Chris jumped out in front me I screamed both from fear and delight afterward. I took note of his beaming smile, and I slapped him playfully on the arm. But his smile only grew wider. Walking back inside, Chris and another guy started rough housing and it could have been my imagination, but I could’ve sworn Chris was trying to impress me. And then later on the trampoline once again, I fell and he offered to help me up, asking if I was all right. And as the night went on, I began to notice him everywhere I was.

After we’d had cake, we all gathered in a circle on the living room floor and started a game of truth or dare. I remember picking dare, and everyone decided I would have to take ten sniffs from the fog machine. I’ve always been a pretty daring person, so I agreed. But when I was done, my head was throbbing, and I was feeling a bit dizzy so I went to go sit on the couch, right next to Chris.

“Why aren’t you playing?” I asked him.

He shrugged. “I don’t really feel like it.”

“Why not?”

“Well, I don’t really feel like telling people random facts about me or doing stupid and dangerous stuff.” He paused. “Like sniffing from a fog machine.” He glanced at me.

“It wasn’t like I could back down,” I said immediately defending myself. What right did he have to call me stupid?

“I guess not, so are you ok?”

“Not really.”

“You should go outside, get some fresh air.” I could’ve sworn I heard his voice rise with worry.

“I’m good,” I said closing my eyes and leaning my head back.

“Are you sure? Maybe you should take some medicine or something.”

I shook my head. “I’m fine.”

After I’d finally convinced him that all I needed was to sit down for a bit, he seemed to loosen up. He started up a normal conversation, asking me things like my favorite color. I was starting to really enjoy myself, but then I felt queasy, so I got up and took him up on his suggestion.

“I’ll be right back,” I said. And then I walked out onto the patio area. The air was chilly, and the water of the pool was clear and shimmering like a crystal. I could hear crickets chirping in the distance, and a full moon was just overhead.

Just then I heard the door opening and closing. I glanced behind me to see him walking towards me.

“Hey,” I said, a bit nervous.

“Hey,” he said, “You feeling any better?”

I nodded. “Ya, you were right, fresh air really helped.”

He smiled. “Good.”

An awkward silence fell over us, and for a moment I just walked back in forth around the pool, staring at the water and wondering what to say. Finally I turned and grabbed onto the support of a tent set up over some chairs and a table.

“Dare me to grab onto this and swing?” I taunted.

“Uh… that’s probably not very safe.”

“Ya, I know, I’d probably fall in the pool.”

“Well, if you did I’d catch you.”

I looked at him, letting those words sink in. That was the closest thing to affection that I had ever encountered from a guy. Was he just joking around? But I saw in his eyes that he wasn’t he would honestly catch me if I was about to fall in the pool.

Finally I managed a reply. “Uh, thanks.”

He smiled. “Sure.

And then an awkward silence cloaked us once again. I stood there contemplating the words he had spoken just a few moments ago. When he spoke up.

“Want to go on the trampoline?”

“Um, sure.”

And so we removed our sneakers, and walked along the short stone path and into the trampoline. Instantly I fell in instead of stepping graceful in – like the clutz I am and rolled over onto my back.

He climbed in and walked over towards me. “Are you ok?”

I nodded. “Ya, I’m fine.”

“Ok, good.” And then he plopped down next to me, and we stared up at the darkness through the spaces in the leaves, and up at the gorgeous full moon. And then it was awkward again. And so I said the first thing that popped into my head.

“It’s pretty out.”

“Ya, it is.”

It was quiet for a long time after that, but then my phone rang, and I was grateful. But less grateful when it was my mom on the phone saying she was on her way and I should be ready in fifteen minutes.

When I hung up, I sat up with my legs crossed on the trampoline, he immediately followed my actions.

“Was that your mom?”

“Ya, she’s going to be here in like fifteen minutes.”

“Oh,” he said, and he honestly sounded kind of sad. “That’s sucks.”

I nodded. “Ya, it does.”

I don’t remember what remember what happened next. But soon enough we were chatting like best friends. Like we’d known each other forever. And technically we had. He had been in most of my classes since the fourth grade, but I’d never actually talked to him. Never actually gotten to know him. His reputation was the “quiet guy.” And so I guess I found no reason in talking to him. But sitting here, outside on the trampoline under the moonlight, I felt some sort of connection to him, and I found I had this urge for him to lean over and kiss me, that kept popping up in my head. But I barely knew him, and yet somehow that was a lie. I did know him, and he was actually a pretty cool guy.

When my mom called again, telling me she was waiting for me outside I groaned, I begged for another five minutes, but she wouldn’t budge. And so I hung up disappointed.

“I have to go.” I told him glumly.

“Oh, ok. I’ll see you Monday,” he said, getting up as I did.

I was just about to step out of the trampoline, when he stopped me with just a single word. “Hug?”

I turned to see him staring at me, somewhat pleading, with his arms outstretched. And I smiled. “Sure.” And we shared a final warm embrace before we headed off inside, where everyone else was opening presents.

I heard my friend shout my name and a boy shout his, everyone turned to look at us, and I blushed from all the attention.

“Where were you?” My friend asked.

“Uh, the trampoline.” I said. “But I have to go now. My mom’s waiting outside.” I turned to my friend who’d invited me. “Sorry.”

She nodded. “That’s fine. See you Monday.”

“See you Monday, Happy Birthday.”

And then I exited out the door, with one final glance and a wave to my new friend.




The party was on a Friday, and that Sunday evening I received a simple text from him,


hey


I sat there pondering if there was any possibility that he could like me for about five minutes before I responded with a simple reply.


hey


I don’t know what happened, but I ended up texting him until midnight, about the most random things. What’s your favorite food? Favorite animal? What kind of things do you like to do? Where are you going for high school? What’s your favorite book? Favorite movie? What kind of car do you want when you grow up? And on, and on, and on. And when it seemed we had run out of topics, more simply appeared from thin air. And then finally, he stopped the pattern.


so do you like me?


I was stunned. What was I supposed to say? This was such an odd question. Yes I liked him, but not necessarily what he was implying but I didn’t want to hurt his feelings, he had been too sweet to me at the party. And so I sent a reply that would change my life.


ya kinda :)



It wasn’t long until he replied.


cool! i like you too! :D :D


thanks :)


xcept ur really pretty and im just weird :P


ur not weird :P ur cute :) and r u blind? :P


After I’d sent that I wanted to smack myself your cute? What was I thinking? I mean, he’d said he’d liked me, but I’d just taken it too far, we’d only been texting for a day, and not even a whole day! Crap! Just then he replied.


what?!? im not blind! ur beautiful! :D and thanks :)


My stomach tightened with excitement. This was the first and only time a guy had actually called me pretty, but beautiful? That was a chance of one in a million. And the fact that he’d appreciated me calling him cute boosted me up. I had flirted with a nice guy and he hadn’t dropped me like a piece of trash, maybe I could do this.


I texted him every day until midnight, chatting, telling jokes, and flirting. And then on January 27th, while we were texting he was telling me about how he’d choked on water a bit earlier, and when I showed concern he sent me a text:


dont worry ur bf’s not dying :)



His words surprised me. Bf? As in like boyfriend? I probably should have shown more concern on the topic, should’ve asked him what he was talking about. But why should I anyway? He clearly liked me, and I liked him to. There was no harm in letting things go this way, and if it turned out there was I could always back out. So I sent a text back that would change my life.


good :)

And since then, Chris has always been a huge part of my life. When I’m feeling down he boosts me up, when I get upset he calms me down, when I confessed to him about all the details of my insane crush, he smiled and accepted it rather smoothly. There is no doubt in the world, that he is the most amazing and perfect guy to ever live. We’ve had our ups and downs, some bigger than others, so far. But we’ve always managed to pull through. We’ve been going out for almost a year, and as ridiculous as you may think it is, I plan to marry this boy, and nobody can stop me.

Life is full of firsts. The first time you ride your bike without training wheels, your first day at a new school, your first friend, your first boyfriend or girlfriend, your first date, first kiss, first time feeling like you know your place in the world. And for me, he gave me almost all of that, he was my first true friend, my first boyfriend, my first date, my first kiss, and he was the reason when I finally found my place in this world.



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