Why is the 23rd so significant? Three years ago, I went on my “first” OFFICIAL date. With bad timing (he’s in the navy, and was called in for duty), we put a hold on things. When he returned, we went out for a bit. But things had changed. It didn’t work out between us. We’re both to blame. And I am happy that we are still friends. Even now.
This is not going to be a post about “what-ifs”. This post is about remembering. To see it in front of me.
On our first date, he told me that when we first met he knew it was love at first sight. I was speechless.
To say the night was perfect would be an overstatement. It was awkward. The night was filled with blushing cheeks and butterflies. It was fantastically imperfect.
I want to remember the way he looked at me. The things he had said to me.
I want to remember how he greeted me every morning. And our late night conversations about nothing that would last forever. I want to remember how he never wanted to say goodnight because it would mean having to put the phone down. I want to remember how it became routine for us to count: “1…2…3…” at the same time to end the call. Moments later he would text me, telling me that he’s already missing me and that he’ll be dreaming of me.
I want to remember when he returned to me.
I want to remember when on a different date he insisted he didn’t need a jacket. Hours later, it was so cold that our breath could be seen. He tried to put on a front, saying that it wasn’t that cold. But it was obvious that he was when he shivered. He had ducked his head with a smile when we exhanged a glance. I bit my tongue to hold the “I told you so” that was about to escape in favor of tugging his arm and pulling him in. We held each other in the middle of a parking lot, his bare arms holding me under my jacket. My jacket that really was too small for the both of us. I remember smiling into his shoulder when he whispered that he didn’t think he could let go (and not because of the cold). I remember how his arms tightened around me.
Even if things did not work out, and I had to face the heartache that any ending of a relationship brings, I want to remember what he gave me.
He made me feel beautiful. He made me feel like there was no one else. He made me feel loved. That’s what I want to remember.
Here’s to my first.
He’s not the love of my life, but at the time the love felt real. It was real. And I hope I won’t ever forget it.