My First Love…
Not even my sexy boss can get me past the fact that it’s Friday… I’m ecstatic..
I was 14 years old. Walking the mall with my “cousin” the summer before going into the 10th grade. She spotted “J,” one of the popular guys from her middle school (junior high to some of you) and stopped to talk. J and I got introduced and I didn’t think much of it. I noticed that he had a high top fade (remember those) and went so far as to have the Kwame’ “rock the polka dot forever” dot in the middle of his hair. That’s what I remember about J the day that we met. My cousin finished talking to him and we went our separate ways. And I didn’t think much about that chance meeting.
Until the first day of school.
I was sitting on the bleachers in the gym. It was P.E. and everyone that had P.E. that period was in the gym waiting for their teacher to claim them.
And I saw him. Staring at me….
So I stared back.
I’m not gonna lie, I still remember it to this day. I remember my “take a picture, it’ll last longer” face that quickly turned into the “don’t I know you from someplace” face. He moved in slow motion towards me and came over and sat down.
We were together by the end of the week.
Now, for a chick that didn’t really like the spotlight, dating (if you could call it that) one of the “well-known” boys in school took some getting used to. Everyone knew him. So by extension, everyone knew me. Now that I think about it, I couldn’t get away with ANYTHING! But I was so naive (imagine that) and shy that I wasn’t trying to sneak. I only had eyes for J.
One day J was walking me to class and his friend Mike came up beside us. And asked if I was the ass of the week (he said it differently, but I knew what he meant) and J said “nah man, that’s my lady.” And I blushed for the rest of the week.
And before I knew it, I was in love.
I mean, it was literally a teenage love. I’m talking the holding my books, walking me home, getting caught by my mother type of love. The writing notes between classes and holding hands type of love. The “mom picking up the phone and yelling ‘NICK'” while I was sweet talking type. Yes, it was serious.
Sneaking out the house to hang with him and the fellas. Sitting on his lap in the back of his cousin’s Diamante’ kissing him at the stop lights. Skipping school to hang out at his house KNOWING that the bus to get me home only ran once an hour. (that bus effed up my life) I was filled with happiness because even though I was in baggy pants and Nike sneakers, J loved me. And I didn’t realize until I got older how much I would appreciate a man that said he loved me without me giving up the ass.
But J came with another side. I knew the sweet guy, the one that I would kiss in the staircase. The one that introduced reggae to me and called me “white” for listening to The Bee Gees. I didn’t know the side that would catch wind that the football player in my English class liked me and fight him outside the weight room. I remember holding his bookbag hoping that no one’s face got bashed in. And after years of seeing my father beat my mother, I knew what I wouldn’t handle. I put his bookbag down and calmly walked to get the bus. I left them to it.
I’d love to say that was the day that J and I broke up, because at least then, I would have some clear definition of when it happened. But the truth of the matter is that we both don’t know how we broke up, or why. We tried to make it work in the 11th and 12th grade, but it just didn’t click. We’ve talked about this fact as nauseum.
We lost touch when J got kicked out of school. Then graduation and jobs and “life.”
And then I get a phone call.
“Ms. _______” came out at me from the other end. And my heart skipped. I’d know that voice anywhere, and it still made me feel like that 15 year old with the Jansport bookbag. He would slip in and out of my life regularly. One day I’d get the call from California, the next time, it was Japan. No matter where I was, he would find me. (which I could never figure out)
Fast forward 17 years later. The thought of J still makes me smile. Maybe it’s because he reminds of a time of innocence (corny line) and my being young and naive. We all know I like to get nostalgic, so maybe that’s it. Or maybe, he just happens to be my first true love. I’ve told him that he’ll always have a place in my heart and he’s told me the same. He’s the first guy I’ve ever felt safe with. And even as the years go by, I relish that feeling.
Now, I’d love to tell you that I don’t know where he is, buecause that’ll make it even more romantic, but J and I still keep in touch. Every now and then, I’ll go by his house and we’ll stay up all night talking, remembering the good ole days. I would be going through something with my boyfriend and call J. And I remember us talking on opposite ends of his couch, then waking up the next morning with his head on my chest. I’ve already gone over word count in this post and I still haven’t told you everything.. But I will say this..
My first true love makes me smile.
I’d love to believe that everyone’s had one (by now) so share…
Peace and Love, Nick