"You used to captivate me
By your resonating light."
When I first met Abbie, I was six years old. I didn't believe in God, but I still had magical thinking, and I thought she glowed. She seemed to have this inner strength, this light, and when she smiled, it was contagious. I could see that she had a lot of pain, but that she was still so good and so kind, and it drew me to her.
I knew right away that we were going to be close. It felt like fate that we had met - we fit into each others' lives perfectly. I think I loved her right away, and I only loved her more as the years went by. I had other friends, but she was special. We could communicate without words - just with body language and facial expressions.
She invited me to sleepovers, which were awkward for me, because the other girls would want to talk about what boys they liked, and I didn't like any boys. I liked Abbie, and I couldn't very well say that to them. So I lied, made up a boy to have a crush on. They wouldn't ask me again for a while when I did that.
My first kiss was with Abbie. I was ten years old. We were alone in the hallway, and I just kissed her. It only lasted a few seconds, but I couldn't get it out of my head afterwards. We didn't speak to each other for about a week after that, and then we pretended that it never happened. I just wanted more than anything for it to happen again.
When I hit puberty, suddenly I didn't just love her, I physically wanted her. I craved her. The desire was so strong I didn't know if I could resist it. I was twelve years old. It was a terrible school year for me. I was diagnosed with ADHD, I got glasses for the first time, I fell behind on work, and I almost failed P.E. Plus, it took me too long to do everything, especially changing in the locker room, because other girls were changing, too, and I couldn't stop myself from looking.
I started homeschooling that year, after SATs. It was remarkably easy to leave. I just had to sign maybe two pieces of paper. My math teacher begged me to stay, told me we could work on the ADHD. Apparently she retired the next year. She was planning to retire anyway, but that was earlier than she was supposed to do it.
I let Abbie become distant from me when I started homeschooling, because being around her was too painful for me to bear.
"Your face, it haunts
My once pleasant dreams.
Your voice, it chased away
All the sanity in me."
I saw Abbie again at a friend's birthday party when we were about fourteen years old. She wasn't the same girl I once loved anymore. She was a shell of her former self. Her light was gone. She was cold.
We played twister and our hands met, and she quickly moved her hand to another spot and made some harsh remark about it.
When I was eighteen, I told her I was gay. She said to me, "I can't support you. I don't want you to be happy, I want you to be pure before God." That was the worst reaction I had ever gotten when I came out to anyone. I was pretty much done with her after that.
All I know about her now is that she lives on the other side of the country. She has a husband now. I think she's become a missionary. She told me that she wasn't happy, but that happiness was a relic to her, what mattered was again, being "pure before God." I can't imagine believing that.
Apparently, when she was a teenager, she fell into a deep depression. She was a liberal, loving Christian. She let religion save her, but she wasn't the same - she became an extremist. She was no longer the same person.
If I had been there for her when she went through that, things may have been different. I'm still haunted by the thoughts that I could have protected her from the people who sought to steal her light, I could have changed things if I had only told her how I felt about her way back when, and so on.
I dream about her sometimes still. We're reunited, we're together, and nothing else matters. She haunts me like this. I wonder sometimes if I'll ever really be over her. Do you ever really get over your first love?