But first I want to thank you for all the congratulations and sweet comments left in response to Friday's post. I feel very loved. And don't forget you still have until February 17th to win a copy of DEVIL'S KISS. (By the way, I've finished reading, and it's a-maaaa-zing.) So scroll down to this post and leave your email addy among the comments. Good luck!
Okay, now back to the topic of...
Ah, l'amour. Of all my teenage experiences, first love is probably what I miss the least, because it was hella painful. Who doesn't remember the ache of unrequited affections? And even if the boy of your dreams loved you back, it was bound to end--usually with the whole school looking on, chattering excitedly about who dumped who. (Or at least that's how it felt.) Then after the breakup, there was the pressure to snag another date before he did, so as not to look like a giant loooooser. Yeah, like I said, I don't miss that.
As I'd mentioned in a previous post, I was a late bloomer. Thanks to a rigidly religious upbringing, I wasn't allowed to start dating until I was sixteen. So my first boyfriend, Derek, was also my first love, my first kiss, my first heartbreak, and most importantly, my guinea pig.
Poor Derek. I had NO clue how to communicate with the boy. The feelings I had for him were so overwhelming and scary that no matter how many times I rehearsed the words, I could never manage to shake them off my tongue while in his presence. Seriously, we barely spoke. He talked, I listened, and we kissed a lot. A whole lot. And when conflict arose between us, (usually in the form of another girl), I responded by breaking up with him instead of initiating dialogue.
Over the course of the school year, we probably broke up and reconciled five times. It was nutters. After eight or nine months of on-again, off-again lovin', we split for good and he quickly wound up with another girl...one who wasn't afraid to talk to him. Though I never let it show, it killed me to watch them together, and it took years before I could honestly say I didn't care about him anymore. (sniffle, sniffle)
So, what did I learn from my first experience with love? Losing Derek to a chattier woman taught me not to be a Wussy McFraidypants. To speak up! To air my grievances and ask for what I want! It was a lesson that served me well, though it took several years and a little trial and error to find my voice.
You'll be happy to know that I have zero problems asserting myself in a relationship now. Just ask my husband, who thinks I'm bossy. I may have drifted a bit too far in the other direction, but that's okay. Because people who ask for what they want are more likely to get what they want, and Melissa Landers is a doormat no more!
Now it's your turn. What lessons did you learn from your first love?