hXc in love
There was a boy named Andrew who had short black hair, stretched ear lobes, and excellent style. At the time, he preferred bicycles to cars, a vegan diet and lifestyle, and he was 16 when I turned 18, which gave me every reason to avoid him. I wouldn't admit it then, but he captivated me.

"Do you have a boyfriend?" he asked.

And unfortunately, at the time, I did. And to make matters worse, said boyfriend was staying at my house. However, Andrew was eager to form a friendship with me, a mutual path towards something.

I'd take him to Denny's for coffee, he'd take me to Whole Foods for Kung Pao Chicken. He'd invite me over to talk for hours outside, chainsmoking and watching the sky. I became a familiar face at his house, although his family was caught off guard by my usual quiet complacency. I was just elated to be hanging out with my new best friend. He seemed like a breath of fresh air, and he shattered every thing I'd been taught about rules and guidelines.

He opened my heart a hundredfold, and this fact scared me the longer we remained friends. Sure he dated other girls, and even kept a girlfriend for 8 months, but for that year, I was only smitten with him. On Valentine's Day, we ate lunch at Waffle House and drove around under the sun. He kissed me once, on the top of my head when I was having a terrible day. Unknowingly, he mended every ache I'd ever developed about males.

Whimsically, we'd run around town, attending local shows with friends, buying things we didn't need, just having fun. We had breakfast every morning for months at a little diner near his house, getting to school right before the bell would ring. I thought he was oblivious to my feelings, but it became more difficult to hide such a fondness that felt so right.

And so, it seems fitting that Andrew would be my date to the senior prom. I wasn't interested in what dress I would wear, or how my hair would look, or even how we would arrive. The crush had grown so much that I forgot to have fun at prom, and I have only vague memories from the constant dream-state I was apparently in that night. It must have been great, he in his Ralph Lauren tux, the beautiful corsage he placed on my wrist, and the sad look in his eyes the minute he realized the one thing missing from my life that he couldn't live up to.

I never think of it as a waste of time, because surely I couldn't have fallen for someone that wasn't worth every second. I cherish the memories we have and the secrets we shared. There is a twinge of jealousy now when I see him with whatever new girlfriend he has. And every so often, I feel like he changed to conform, leaving the impression I got from him in the past.

He and I made plans to run away on vacation and experience the world someday. One can only wish.


Wednesday, March 07, 2001


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