Thursday, April 17, 2008

The Boyfriend Chronicles: #1

He was the first guy I ever held hands with, the first guy I wrote my initials with in a heart, and the first boy I kissed. He was charming, funny, nerdy, and sweet. Ah, the memories of 8th grade...

Matt played the only oboe in the band, and I played 1st-chair flute, so we sat next to each other every day for an hour. Talking led to friendship, and friendship led to what can only be described as the most innocent, pure, dorky romance on earth. We only saw each other at school--never outside of class or lunch--yet we held hands as we strolled along the walkways between buildings. Innocent indeed!

Well, until The Kiss. One day, almost six months into our fledgling romance, our friends cornered us at lunchtime between the cafeteria and gym. They told us that we'd have to kiss each other on the cheek, or else they wouldn't let us leave. Our friends were pretty experienced (or so we thought, and really, in 8th grade it's all about appearance), so we couldn't let them down. They shoved us close to each other putting us face-to-face. I looked at him, and he stared back with that blank question mark deer-in-headlights look. Of course, I probably had that same look... but oh well. I leaned forward to kiss his cheek expecting him to present it. When he failed to turn his head, our lips touched. We kissed. Thus, Matt was my first kiss. (The first of many sweet, innocent kisses I might add.)

Summer officially ended school for the year, and we vowed to not date other people even though we likely wouldn't see each other until the next autumn. It wasn't exactly hard to avoid people when I never went out... and I talked to Matt on the phone every day. We were great friends, and we shared many of the same interests. But two months of being apart had strained our conversations. Maybe we grew apart... maybe we couldn't handle a real relationship... I don't know. I broke up with him over the phone. No tears, no apologies, simple and matter-of-fact.

We went to high school together, often sitting next to each other in band or in other classes. He dated other people, and I developed other friends. We still talked occasionally, but I don't think either one of us wanted to see about starting over. That's just how it was: uncomplicated.

I haven't talked to him since we graduated high school almost six years ago. He left the state for college. Even though we're no longer friends, I hope he's well and happy. If nothing else, he was truly special to me for that one shining moment called 8th grade. I won't easily forget him, nor will I ever forget that perfect first kiss.

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