Ten years ago, I first fell in love with a girl. She was beautiful and enigmatic. I felt so little, standing next to her (despite being at least an inch or two taller). She was older, and taught me a lot of things.
We got off to an awkward start. I hit her in the abdomen with a fast ball that left her gasping for air.
An original move, if I must say so myself. From then on, we always had something to talk about (sports, or otherwise). The rest, as they say, is history. The most we did was hold hands and cuddle, but it was enough. And then she moved away. It was over. I was heart-broken.
Five years later, we got in touch online. It wasn’t the great reunion of epic-love-proportions, as seen on TV. The conversations started out pretty well. But they were no more than harmless flirtations. She had a girlfriend, and I haven’t even come out yet. And then the accident happened. I became a recluse. I didn’t know what I want. I didn’t know who I was. And I wasn’t confident in my new, disfigured shell. I made the bad move of dissociating from the world after the accident. We lost contact — again.
Several attempts were been made at small talk over social networking sites two years later (read: before Facebook), but those ended as naturally as they began. Then it dawned on me. It wasn’t 2001 anymore, and I’m not the same 14-year-old rookie. She had a role to play in my life, and she played it well. She became the catalyst of my being; I owe a part of my identity to her. And now I was supposed to move on. She has changed, and so have I.
Ten years later, I remember this girl with great fondness. We haven’t made contact since, but we’re acquainted. She is a woman now, beautiful as ever, out and proud… and gayer than I could ever be. Our time may have been short and sweet, but it was a time well-lived.
*Profile shot of me by Kim C.