First, Crazy & True

1 May

First love, crazy love and true love.

I had a crush on Kelly from the first time I met her.  Acting class, 9th grade, I must have been fourteen years old.  She was the classic older woman,  being fifteen, and seemed to possess all the knowledge and sophistication which that age implied.  She was out of my league and I knew it.   So we became friends.   Friends amongst friends, actually, as her basement became the de facto clubhouse for a whole group of us, a great place for Doritos and Cokes and Saturday Night Live.  

During Kelly’s first year of college a bunch of us drove down for the weekend.  We laughed, we drank, and Kelly and I took a late night walk.  We sat on the steps of a quiet building and I told her about the death of my father, talking about it for the first time with anyone.  Shortly thereafter we had a date.  I took her home, I said good night and there was a kiss.  A kiss in the cold night air that was so long wished for and yet so utterly surprising that I could feel the thrill of it right down to my toes.  I can feel that kiss to this day.  First love.

The thing about Becky was that she picked me.  Yet another acting class, this one in college.  The teacher divided us into two groups, putting us on opposite sides of the room, and asked us to communicate with someone.  As the exercise began and the resulting noise ensued I realized that a very cute girl with long, dark hair was trying to talk to me!  I couldn’t believe my luck!  Of course, she already had a boyfriend who she’d been dating since she was fourteen and who she just couldn’t break up with because it would kill him!  She also scratched her shoulders until they bled and I once made her so angry that I got up in the middle of the night and hid the scissors.  Oh yeah, and the boyfriend never went away.  But these were all minor impediments.  Our relationship continued its ragged course as we chased each other around the midwest for the better part of nine years.  Thank god she finally decided to hate me.  Crazy love.

Amy was different.  As was I, by that time.  I’d been in the wilderness for a while.  I had turned thirty.  We met, we went out.  She liked me, but I wasn’t sure.  Then I liked her and she wasn’t sure.  

But then she invited me to a play.  It was long and tedious and on our way to a party afterward we got caught in the rain.    As we sat in our damp clothes in a slightly shabby Chicago hotel suite and sipped our drinks, I felt a subtle glow, and from within this quiet moment of contentment I heard myself say “What are we doing?” 

She smiled a rather bewitching smile and asked me what I thought we were doing. 

“I think we’re dating.” I replied. 

And so we were.  We’ve been together ever since and I cannot imagine spending my life with anyone else.  She is, by my definition, true love. 

And from that love has grown a family, and a whole new set of definitions.

My child snuggling into my chest.  First love.

Heath insisting on wearing his underwear backwards and frequently eating his own boogers.  Crazy love. 

The absolute joy I get from making my daughter smile.  True love.

First love, crazy love and true love.  They make me who I am.



One Response to “First, Crazy & True”

  1. Mary Anne May 3, 2009 at 9:49 am #

    Kelly? Who knew?

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