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I used to wear Red Shoes **updated on Sept. 20

Posted by on Sep. 14, 2011 at 10:19 AM
  • 8 Replies

First love - September 14, 2011 

Who was your first love?

 Yearbook signing day in my high school was a big tradition.  We carried four or five of our friend's books with us, wrote our special messages and exchanged those for more when other friends passed us in the hallways.  Sometimes, we were told to leave the book with a certain teacher and the owner would pick it up at the end of the day.  When the final bell rang, we would scurry to find own book, then hurry to the soda shoppe where we would read the notes to see who had signed and what they had said.  I had been waiting for just the right moment to approach my "crush"; I was beginning to think it wasn't going to happen.  He would be graduating in a few days and I was a lowly sophomore.  I had to wait my turn.  Our only interactions had been smiles in the hallways, a nod now and then and once he gave me a dry towel when swimming class was finished.  We had a real romance going, don't you think?  Just seeing him sent butterflies to my stomach and my heart would race.  Was I going to be brave enough to ask him to sign my book?

 The next day I was sent to the boys' gym with some paperwork for the coach.  Since my typing teacher and the coach were married and she was sending the paperwork, I suspected it was a grocery list and not really school business.  Just before the bell rang, she told me to go and then I could go home.  I opened the door to the coach's office and my heart started to thump, there he was, my Crush, sitting across from the coach. My inner voices told me not to look at him, I opened the door and gulped.


"Mrs. Shields asked me to give this to you," I held out the envelope.

 "Hi, kiddo, how are ya?" Coach smiled as he took it. 

I turned to make my not so graceful exit and heard, "Hello Miss Hunter, is that your yearbook you have there, well give it here," and Crush took my book.  And I was holding his.

I scribbled something about have a good time at college and all the best in the future.  My hands shook as I signed my name.  When I looked up he was still writing.  I finally got out of there with some lame whisper of good bye and heard the dismissal bell.  I didn't look at my book until I was at home alone, all these years later, I still remember what he said:

                                    " To the prettiest girl on Sherman Avenue

                                    I wish you all the happiness, success and love

                                    The world has to offer, you deserve it

                      I will always remember your smile, you laugh and

                                    I will never forget your fabulous legs.

                               Love always, Crush "

His was the last signature I got that year, I didn't want anyone else to see what he had written.

 He graduated, I took my final exams and summer vacation started. 

 It was a Wednesday, typical at home evening.  I was surprised when my mother told me that there was a boy on the phone asking for me.  I was floored when Crush said hello. He asked me to go to the July 4th fireworks.  He was asking me out on a date!  I was so happy when my mother said yes.  And so began my summer of Crush.  After dinner, he would come by and we would go to the hang-out, or the park.  We went for long drives, when he was allowed to have his father's car.  We went to movies and sometimes, we just sat on the porch watching the world go by.  My family had planned the annual vacation at the shore and I was upset that I would have to go away.  He laughed and told me that his family was going away too.  To the same place, for two weeks.  So we spent the days at the beach (nice that both families got along) and we spent the nights on the boardwalk.  He taught me how to surf, I taught him how to dance.  We were the typical teenaged couple.  Then summer was over, and he was gone.  He didn't really ever say we were over, he just stopped calling and I saw him one night with another girl.  I did a lot of crying and wondered what happened.

School started again, and Crush was off to college.  I dated other boys that year, but he was always in the back of my head.  I went to prom, did my dance competitions and got a job.  I heard that he was doing well.  And then it was summer again. 

When I went back for my senior year, I heard that he had been drafted, along with millions of other boys at that time.  I prayed for them all, to come home safe and sound.  I met someone special, he did come home safe.  I graduated, he got married.  I got a real job, he became a firefighter.  I got engaged, he had twins.  I got married, he moved back to town.  I moved to the Midwest, he became a widower.  I didn't see him again for almost 20 years.

  It was my class reunion, I walked into the restaurant and toward the bar.  I knew my girlfriends would be waiting there and was anxious to see them all.  And there was Crush, he smiled at me and winked.  I didn't know if I should go to him, or join my friends in the other corner.  I chose my friends and just gave him a wave.  He finished his drink, and came over to me.  He kissed my cheek and said "well, you still got the legs, Hunter"  I laughed and said something dumb.  He said have a good time and left.  I had a great time, but there he was in the back of my head again.

 Every time I would come home to visit with family, I would see him.  At the grocery store, or the gas station.  Just in passing.  We never spoke, he would just be there.  I went to the old hang-out for a coffee and to visit a friend and he walked in.  This time, he sat down at my table and said "so how are ya?".  We made small talk and he said, call me sometime.  I was married, why would I call him? 

 Another class reunion, another trip home.  My husband stayed with his mother while I went to the hotel with my friends and enjoyed "the old days" again.  And there was Crush, he approached me again and I told him all that was going on.  That my husband was ill, had been for 10 years.  He told me that he had heard about it, small towns still talk.  He told me to enjoy my weekend, and he'd see me around.  My husband got very sick and I had to take him home quickly.  He didn't make it and his mother wanted me to bring him back to our small town once more.  So I did. 

 And there was Crush.  He told me he understood, and if I needed him to call.  But I didn't, I couldn't talk to him about THIS.

  After a time, he called me.  He asked if I was coming to town anytime soon.  I told him I was and he asked me to go out to dinner.  I did.  I wanted so badly to have the old feelings, I wanted to go back in time.  But it didn't happen.  We were not the boy and the girl anymore, we were adults with histories.  And we both knew it.

 He told me he loved me, that he always had and always would.  He told me that maybe, just maybe, if we had been a little older then, we may have been the best couple ever now.  But he knew that we could not be together now; we would have to work too hard to make it work.  And he kissed me and he was gone.

 Every so often, I think of him.  Still.  And I thank him for letting me go, for letting see what I was and what I could be.  He gave me some of the courage I needed to get on with life, and helped me to see that I am worthy of love and happiness.  My first love helped me to find my lasting love. 



 Leaving on a Jet Plane

I've dreamed about this trip my whole life.  I'm going to Scotland.  Finally.

I only wish I could see everyone, but some of them are gone now and I will only be able to go to the cemetary.  But, that's all right, I talk to them already what difference will it make?

I want to see the house where I was born, I want to see the school where my dad was a real terror and I want to see the shop where my mum made dresses.  The family is as excited as I am, all those letters and phone calls - I don't think I'll get a chance to sit never mind sleep.

I wonder if I will start talking like that again?  I haven't heard it in so long, maybe I've forgotten how.  I'm to excited to sleep now, but I should it's a long trip and I will be exhausted when I get there. 

Stuart said we will go to the family castle and I can sign the great book.  And he will show me where my great-grandpa and grandpa signed it; my dad never did, but I guess my signature will do.  He said we can have tea on the lawn, since I have the right last name.  My aunt Jennie is just planning to "look at me" - I havent' seen her in almost 20 years and she just looked at me then too.  60 or more relatives that I have never met; but they talk to me as if I lived across the street.  And that's just my dad's side.  I know my mom's side is just as anxious to see me and that will take up all of next week.  I will visit the house where my gran and papa lived, and see the farm where they used to help at harvest.  I have 10 cousins on that side, so I'm sure there will be lots of eating and tea there too. 

I'm sorry I couldn't bring the boys, Seattle just couldn't get the time and Boo and his wife can't afford it.  But at least I can say this is Bob, my husband and I can say this is Giant - and he brought his kilt. Bob wants to see the scenery and take lots of pictures, Giant is just as excited as I am.

I only wish my mother hadn't been so scared to fly.  She never wanted to take me to Scotland, geez, she never left New Jersey once she got there.  

I'm going to try to get some sleep now, we still have a long time to fly.  Bob and Giant are sleeping already, what's wrong with me?

What is the annoying noise?  Oh, great, it's my alarm clock.  I've been dreaming again.  Hope the coffee is ready.









by on Sep. 14, 2011 at 10:19 AM
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Replies (1-8):
by Cherrie on Sep. 14, 2011 at 12:23 PM

How very touching.

by on Sep. 14, 2011 at 12:27 PM

Thank you

by on Sep. 14, 2011 at 6:26 PM

Tears in my eyes. Beautifully written!

by on Sep. 15, 2011 at 12:19 PM

Thank you for the compliments

by Silver Member on Sep. 15, 2011 at 9:33 PM
From beginning to end, that was wonderful to read.

As far as the actual events, isn't it odd how people come in and out of our lives just at the right (and sometimes wrong) times.
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by on Sep. 15, 2011 at 10:33 PM

What a wonderful story!

by Bronze Member on Sep. 16, 2011 at 8:22 AM

This is an amazing story and so beautifully writen. It took courage to see that you would have worked out once but not any more. I am so glad that your first love helped you to find your lasting love. How beautifully put!!

by on Sep. 16, 2011 at 9:09 AM

Thanks for all the nice comments.

I appreciate that I can put my scribbles down now, and someone actually reads them!

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