Athena Aurelius

Skeletons – They Only Stay in the Closet if the Door is Closed

Life is one big experiment with me.  I am my own research project.  I learn through trial and error, not being genius enough to think ahead.  Thus, I was never very good at chess.  Case in point:  The First Boyfriend

Harken back to 1977.  You know, platform shoes, Angel Flight pants, Quiana.  Yep, it was the disco era, and Donna Summer was ruling the airwaves.  We all had Saturday Night Fever.  The whole shebang.  I was 12 years old.  Romeo (names have been changed to protect the guilty) was 14 years old.  Jupiter aligned with Mars, the moon was in the Seventh House, and we just fell in love.  We stayed together for almost four years — through most of high school.  He ended up my first love in more ways than one, if you get my drift.  But it was purely magical.  Because sex with love is the ultimate, no matter the age.  I was the good girl, he was the gangster.  He was a jock, I was with the band.  His bad boy-ness was so cool, mostly because he wasn’t bad to me.  His family loved me, and I felt I belonged there.  I finally broke up with him because of his jealousy issues and because I needed room to explore the world.  He was devastated, and dropped out of school temporarily.  His family and friends begged me to take him back.  But I was off and running, never to look back.  That was in 1981.

Now fast forward to 2000.  It’s dark, nearly Christmas.  I’m just out of a marriage, feeling a little blue.  Suddenly my brain flashes back to Romeo and the time we stole away to his bedroom where he had hung Christmas lights to set a romantic mood.  From there my mind runs rampant over all the memories during my time with Romeo. Coming to his house after a chilly high school football game (he was a football player, I was a letterette), lighting the fireplace and making love on a sheepskin rug in front of the fire.  The times he cooked for me (pretty good for a teenage boy, eh?).  The love notes, the holdings hands.  The SEX.  Man oh man, my heart is in a clutch because there is nothing like that first love.  The romance, the giddiness.  The can’t sleep, can’t eat, can’t think of anything else.  The feeling that it’s just the two of you against the world.

[Funny.  Nowhere in that fantasy were there any remembrances of the jealousy, the petty fights, me stealing his car to drive it around the block, the bad blood between me and my parents because of him.  It’s funny how one glorifies the dead and the first love(s).  Just like having a child and forgetting the pain of labor, the Higher Power erases the bad stuff from our memory enough to allow us to do it again and again and again!  What kind of sick joke is that?!]

Anyhow….getting back to me, Christmas, blue, flashback….oh yeah — so, I call information, get his number, and dial it.  I hadn’t seen Romeo since we broke up, but I knew that he got married at some point and had kids.  Current status unknown, but what the heck.  The phone rings.  And he answers it!  After he finds out my name there is a small pause while all of this sinks in.  After the preliminary inquiries of “how are you” “are you married” “how many children do you have” and such, I tell him about the flashback I had and tell him that, somehow, I miss him.  As this slips out of my mouth I am thinking — no, SCREAMING — to myself, What the f*ck are you talking about?  You don’t miss him!  You miss the idea of him or the memory of him.  But you don’t know him now!  As soon as the words tumbled out of my mouth I regreted them, and tried to backpedal.  But how do you shove five minutes’ worth of bullsh*t back into your lungs?  To his credit, he was quite kind, and said he was flattered.  And I wished him a merry Christmas, and hung up the phone as fast as I could.

After that incident I did some serious soul searching.  I tried to analyze my reasons for pulling such a stunt