The First Love Stays With You Forever
I have had a ghost visiting me all week. He has been with me everyday, every minute holding out a key for me to accept. It opens a huge wooden door that will allow me to enter into this beautiful garden. A perfumed garden of memories. Along side the fragrant flowers lies the truth.
I hesitated all week. I was comfortable living with my reality of the events, of my reality of how things were. I'm not sure if I was ready to let go of the sugar coated, butterfly and popsicle fantasies that I held close to my heart for thirty years.
I had a pile of letters he had written to me for over the years we were together and circumstances dictated we be apart. I could not touch them until yesterday, and they were as revealing as I feared, as I knew they would be. I could only read two of the many.
I was an immature young girl ill prepared and unaware of what I was into, what I had. I had everything I ever wanted, everything I ever dreamed about, wished for. And I blew it.
I was self-centered, arrorgant, and inconsiderate. Not all the time...but my insecurities over rode everything. Today, a damn bulb goes off over my head I thought...."Oh....Hell". Oh boy. God forgive me. John forgive me. Though I am certain he did a long time ago. When I met him, he had just emerged from a self inflicted "dropping out". How could I not realize....(I was really just a dummy)...about depression?
We were together for over two years. We were very, very close. And I did something very stupid. Then, being the good Catholic School Girl, I had to confess to him.
And that was that.
I was in a Service Merchandise in Louisville one afternoon seven years after the break-up. And there he was. I had not seen him in that period of time. I remember exactly what I was wearing, a beautiful white wool dress from Neimon Marcus in Houston. I had long hair (again) but my room mate had just given me a perm (this was the big hair ear of the '80's now) and it looked pretty good, except for the right side, it was kind of frizzy. I saw him. He was on the other side of the store, but I knew instantly it was him. I was in line and I turned to the woman behind me, "How does my hair look?" I asked, she looked kind of startled but then told me to tuck the right side behind my ear. I left the line, my heart pounding so loud that I heard it in my ears.
I just stood next to him. He turned. It was suspended in time, just looking at each other. The we hugged.
We went out into the parking lot and talked. I told him all about Bridget......that is all I remember, she was four years old.
"I love you" I said as we parted.
"I love you" he said.
When the phone book came out the next year, his number was gone.