Chasing Seagulls

{May 3, 2009}   First Love

I’m beginning to lose interest in the things that have already happened to me and have started thinking only of what I’m going to do. I guess that’s part of growing up (I’m doing that as slowly as possible). But I do want to record certain things so that when I’m old and feeble-minded, I’ll have a reference. What’s the point of living a life that you can’t remember?

My first love. That’s one to save, and actually, one I haven’t thought of in a long time. So let’s get it down before it doesn’t matter anymore. I mentioned him in an earlier post. T. He was my virginity-taker’s best friend. No, I’m not the kind of girl that just skips around the circle. This was not planned. It happened over a period of time and was completely unexpected.

The first time I saw him was when I went to A.’s apartment and he was sitting outside with his homemade bong. I thought he was weird and that was the end of it. But after A. left, my friend D. started hanging out with him, so he became my friend by default. I’m sure she had a crush on him. She got crushes on everybody. But he wasn’t the kind of guy that fucks all the girls. In fact, the whole time I knew him he only had 2 girlfriends and they didn’t last long. He didn’t seem interested in sex, which made him a great guy friend. What he was interested in was alcohol. He drank Thunderbird like it was the nectar of the gods. I tried it once and thought it was the nastiest shit on the planet. But he loved it and he drank a lot of it. He was into all the other stuff, too…weed, hallucinogens, pills. He was a little more advanced than I was at the time.

When I first started hanging out with him, I discovered he didn’t like physical contact. This, of course, was something to tease him with, and D. and I would chase him around, screaming, “I’m gonna touch you!”. Then, at some point, I managed to wiggle my way past that. I told him I liked to hug and he would reluctantly allow me to hug him when he would leave. Eventually, it became customary, and he didn’t seem to mind as much. One day, D. told me that T. had said something to her about liking me. I was surprised because I had never thought of anything with him beyond friendship. But the idea made me look at him differently and my feelings began to change. The exact moment I knew it was love was a strange one. T. had taken my brother out drinking and when he dropped him back at our house, I came out to see him. Before my brother got out of the car, he leaned out of the back seat and puked in the street. T. kindly came around the car to make sure he was alright, and when I looked at him, I thought, “I love him.” Plain and simple. Then T. put a nice little bow on it by asking my brother, “What have you been eating? Beans?”

Our relationship never progressed past the point of friends, though. The only time it ever got close was one night when we went to an outdoor punk rock show. T. was on his second bottle of Thunderbird and I had drank four beers at lightning speed. T. and I were hanging on each other like close friends do when they are extremely drunk. It was time to leave and I told my other friends, T. and A. (hush) that I was going with T. They misinterpreted this to mean I was going to his house and they knew how I felt about him, so they were telling me not to do that in my condition. I let them know I only meant to ride home with him and after making sure we had a designated driver, they let me go. T. and I were in cuddling in the backseat, kissing each other on the cheek and the top of the head and talking nonsense. The whoever that was driving had all the windows rolled down trying to sober us up, but it wasn’t working too well. When we got to my house, I got out of the car and T. got out to give me my hug. After hugging, I pulled back and looked up at him and he looked down at me and we shared the barest of kisses. Just a slight brushing of our lips together and that was it. But it was enough to sober me up a little. When I got in the house, I went to my room and just sat there, thinking, Did that really happen? I went over it and over it, remembering everything that had happened on the ride home, storing it away. I had never felt so happy. The next day, T. called and asked nervously if we had “done anything” the night before. I was worried he would freak out and not want to be friends anymore, so I said nothing had happened, which was almost true. I don’t know if he remembered and was checking to see if I did, or what, but I was only thinking that keeping him as a friend was better than not having him at all. So our relationship stayed the way it was, even though we both knew we liked each other.

A conversation we had one night in his car might have explained why. We were sitting there talking when he suddenly asked if he could rest his head on my chest. Of course I had no problem with that. While he was lying there, maybe because he didn’t have to look at me, he said, “I would go out with you, but I love my drugs too much.” I answered, “Oh, that’s sweet, T.” The reason he said that was because I had found out that he was shooting crushed up pills and had gotten very upset. Plus, I was always telling him he drank too much and I was worried about him. I told him that every time he left me, I was afraid I’d never see him again. He agreed, knowing that at any time, he could overdose or get into an accident. He seemed to understand the seriousness of that, but it wasn’t enough to make him slow down.

He was always doing crazy shit. Once when he and my brother had locked themselves out of the house, they had broken one of the small windows in the door to get in. D. and I came in later and T. started playing around with the broken glass, acting like he was going to slice his throat. I got really pissed and slammed my bedroom door in his face. He came in and threw his head into my lap and apologized profusely until I forgave him. Another time, T., his then-girlfriend J., my brother and I were all hanging out on the roof of a parking garage, smoking a joint. T. had drank 2 bottles of Thunderbird and decided he was going to jump up and run along the ledge of the building. Immediately, I was running alongside him, ready to grab him if he fell. Every couple of feet, there was a gap, and he would jump over, still running. He got to the end and jumped down, laughing. It had scared the shit out of me, and when I turned around, I saw J. watching me and I knew that she knew. (That relationship ended when J. got pregnant by another guy.)

The end came when T. stole his parents’ car one day. They were finally fed up and had arranged for him to go to rehab in Boca Raton, FL. Before he left, he gave me his leather jacket to hold for him. I loved that jacket. Very punk rock. He said he would be back soon to pick it up. We wrote to each other for a little while, but eventually life got in the way, and we lost contact. Then one day, two years later, my grandma answered the phone and it was him. He said he was in town and wanted to know if he could come by. I was so excited. When he got there, we sat on my grandma’s front porch and talked. He told me that he had finally stopped drinking and that he had been sober for a few months. I was very happy for him. He had a girlfriend, who was actually sitting in the car the whole time, but I also had a boyfriend, so that didn’t really matter. I told him I was graduating high school that week and he said he would come, which he did.

The last time I saw him, I was married and seven months pregnant with my first child. He had tracked me down and was finally wanting his jacket back. He came over for a few minutes and then he was gone. I don’t know where he is now.

That’s the story of T.  Like first loves do, he’ll always hold a place in my heart. I hope he’s happy and doing well.

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