we all have memories from our childhood - well at least most of us do. and thanks to my parents, the scrapbook of my youth is almost picture perfect.
but do you have memories of your childhood feelings and emotions? i don't know how i would have answered that question before this week. i know now.
i do. and some of these feelings and emotions have been, for lack of a better word, simply overwhelming.
i have written about my childhood sweetheart several times throughout this blog. i knew him in 3rd, 4th and 5th grades. for him it was 4th, 5th and 6th.
his family moved to our small town from Canada. his dad was the local doctor. i was a hypochondriac - induced by my mother. our parents became friendly and spent a considerable amount of time together socializing. we even took a summer vacation to the beach together. as you might imagine, this worked out pretty good for our puppy love affair.
my very first memory of him is when he played the lead role in the 4th grade play, Mary Poppins. He was Bert, Dick Van Dyke's character in the movie version.
i was smitten when he walked onstage. (obviously my affinity for performers and artist started at a young age.)
i walked around singing supercalifragilisticexpialidocious for weeks afterwards.
i don't remember exactly when it was decided we would be boyfriend-girlfriend. or whose idea it was. or how it all really got started. for all i know, and considering how bossy i have always been, i might have just approached him one day and TOLD him he was to be my boyfriend.
however it came to be, i do remember being thrilled about it.
he was smart - really smart. and cute ~swoon~ and talented. had a groovy accent - though he did enjoy pointing out how stupid mine sounded... *roll eyes* he was cool - which was very important back then because The Fonz was all the rage.
he and his brother talked a lot abut 'jugs' and i remember that just cracked me up. i don't recall having 'jugs' at that age but quickly realized they were important to boys and immediately begin wishing for some of my own. note to self: be careful what you wish for.
i told you about holding his hand at the first Star Wars movie. (and for the record, i am sitting here with a really stupid grin on my face as i reminisce and write...)
a group of families i grew up with vacationed every summer in florida. moms, kids and babysitters for a week in a rented two story beach house. (this one =>) the gulf of mexico out the back door and sand dunes on each side. my sweetheart's family joined us at least one summer. luckily, i was still at that age where it didn't bother me if a boy saw me in a swimsuit. i remember sitting alone with him in those dunes. talking. joking. writing our names in the sand. trying to flirt and not really knowing how. we sat in this big chair together out on the balcony - innocently watching the tide and the people and the world go by.
i remember walking along the beach with him late one afternoon. holding hands. and talking. keep in mind that most of our in-depth conversations - when he wasn't explaining to me how canadians were superior to americans - went something like this...
"do you like me?"
"yes. i like you. do you like me?"
"yes. i like you too. are you sure you really like me?"
"yes. i really like you. but don't tell anyone!"
"okay. i won't"
of course i told everyone i knew...
who are we kidding?
and as a matter of events, our first big fight was over something of that nature. he left me once, by choice, for another woman. i hate her to this day. almost broke my little heart. the ONLY saving grace in all of it was that his younger brother, whom i always adored, pulled me aside one day and told me matter of factly that he liked me way better than his brother's current girlfriend. somehow, that made it all okay...
but we made up. again, i don't remember the details. just that we did. shortly thereafter, he left me again. not by choice. his dad moved their family to oregon to start a practice there.
i remember my emotion when i found out they were moving. shock. disbelief. grief. the deepest pain i had ever experienced in my young life.
the last time we were ever together as children was when his family came to our home for dinner. all of us kids played hide and seek in the basement. of course my sweetheart and i hid together in the dark dank completely unromantic barren bathroom. there, in the dim light, surrounded by the sweet smell of mold and mildew, i was certain i was about to get my first real live on-the-lips kiss. i think my eyelids were shaking i was so nervous. i wanted to kiss him. i wanted him to kiss me. i wanted him to WANT to kiss me. and i think he did. want to kiss me.
but he didn't. we didn't. we never kissed. not even once. ever.
about that time a voice from above yelled it was time for his family to leave. so they left for the evening and then they moved. he was gone and this time, it did break my little heart. completely.
i've told you about writing him letters. and never getting a response.
i slowly began to believe that he didn't really like me after all.
that he had forgotten all about me.
fast forward to college. early 1987. a song by amy grant.
it reminded me of him.
Long time since I've seen your smile,
But when I close my eyes,
You were no more than a child,
But then so was I,
Young and tender.
Time carries on;
I guess it always will,
But deep inside my heart
Time stands still.
Stay for awhile.
Well, it's good to see your smile,
And I love your company.
Stay for awhile.
And remember the days gone by;
For a moment it can seem
Just the way it used to be.
Snowfalls, phone calls, broken hearts,
Clear summer days,
Warm and lazy;
Long walks, long talks, after dark;
We vowed we'd never forget.
Now it's hazy.
Time takes its toll,
And time alters our view.
It would be nice to
Spend some time with you
i finally confessed to my dad i was thinking about trying to get in touch with my sweetheart. would it be okay with him? he agreed to the plan.
i made a few phone calls and finally got a number. HIS number. he was back in Canada.
this is the exact conversation...
"may I speak with 'Sweetheart' please?"
"This is he."
"Sweetheart, do you know who this is?"
he did remember me.
we talked. laughed and joked. it was comfortable. he was charming.
i went to the calgary olympics in winter of 1988. no expectations other than to reconnect with some old friends and enjoy the games. i stayed with his younger brother. i met sweetheart's then girlfriend. i wanted to hate her. i planned to hate her. he was, after all, mine first. but there was no way. she was wonderful. it was quickly evident that she made him very happy and that he loved her deeply. how can you hate that??
so after the games, i went home. back to college. we kept up for awhile and once again life took us in different directions. he married his girlfriend and the last thing i heard - 13 years ago through a mutual friend - was they had their first baby and all was well.
and i got married. started a family. living a grown-up's life. then this valentine's my hubby took me to the star wars concert. the music brought back a flood of memories and emotions and led me to
Google to the rescue. seriously. 15 minutes and i had a potential email addy.
much to my surprise and overwhelming delight - it was him. it is him. he sent pictures of himself, his three beautiful kids and the girlfriend - now wife - that i so wanted to hate- who looks like she hasn't aged a day since i met her 16 years go. who DOES she think she is?!?!
i digress. exhale. deep breath...
i emailed him back and told him about the blog entry and why i contacted him. gave him the link. sent him my IM id.
later that night, we went live on IM. he told me he read the blog entry and that it brought tears to his eyes. that it took him back to being 11 years old in the theater and having those feelings of being excited and terrified at the same time. of course that made me cry.
and we have been chatting via email and im for several days now. he said it is bizarre. how we now have the opportunity to be the friends we never could be before.
and before your little bloggie minds get to cranking... his wife knows we are chatting. my hubby knows. they will ALL probably read this. so keep it clean. i'm serious. the only suspicious accusation we've had so far was from HIS wife. she accused him of talking with a southern accent the other night when he started telling her about chatting with me.
what's that's all about, ehh?