Thursday, February 16, 2012

Being brave: telling your crush you love him

Hey guys,

I guess Valentine's Day inspired me to start writing a lot more on love. Here's what happened to me when I decided to tell my first crush I loved him. Hopefully, he won't read this. Hopefully, my memory is intact. If it isn't all true, we could just call it creative nonfiction, right?  
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My First Crush
By Me?

When I was ten, I had a crush on a boy I knew since we were seven. We were friends, though not close friends, not the type of friends who tell things to one another. We happened to be classmates every year since we first met, and to some extent he was always there for me. That’s probably why / how this crush started. Also, we shared the same birthday.

He was a very good-looking boy. Tall and scrawny like a boy who unexpectedly grows up too fast during summer, with brown hair and brown eyes that lit up when he talked with his friends. Whenever I looked at him, I’d always find him smiling. Always in a good mood. He was someone that made you feel comfortable and happy just to be around.

Even though I had best friends I trusted, I hid my crush from them. I wasn’t ashamed of having a crush on him, I just didn’t know how to bring up the subject. I also didn’t know how to explain the way I felt. One day, though, when we were waiting in line after recess, they were talking about what they thought of the boys in our classroom, and I let slip that I was interested in someone.

Oh, how dreadful it is to see your friends won’t let you alone until you let them know all your secrets. They tortured me until they took away what they needed. And, as I stood there with a sinking heart, watching their excitement, my world turned upside-down when I noticed my crush had just arrived and stood behind me. 

Luckily, he had not heard our conversation. At least I don’t think he did. But, instead of dropping the topic, his presence left my friends even more excited. I don’t know why, but they decided I simply had to let him know how I felt. Expressing my feelings, of course, was out of question. No way. No, thank you very much.

One of my friends grabbed me by my shoulders and started shaking me when she noticed he was walking away.

He’s leaving. He’s leaving! Go. Go now! Go tell him!” She yelled in a high-pitched voice. She had never yelled at me.

Startled, my brain functioned to stop infuriating the creature that subjugated me -- er. . . to be nice to my friend. My heart was beating fast, but I had to be brave. She might be right, I thought.Maybe this is the time to tell him that I like him.

I spun on my heels and ran up to him. He looked a little surprised when I approached him, but was still friendly.

I -- Um -- I have to tell you something,” I stammered, losing that first courageous impulse.

His eyes told me he knew precisely what was coming his way, and it was a little disheartening to notice he didn't think that was a good surprise. Since I had started all that, I felt I had to finish it.

“I like you,” I told him. And with my heart racing, added: “And I wish you were my boyfriend. Do you want to be my boyfriend?”

Now that I think of it, I probably gave him a heart attack. I was too abrupt. Even if he had feelings for me, my question came so out of nowhere that he'd still have said 'no.'

He didn't say no, though. He, UM, actually ran away. Literally. He spun on his heels and ran away from me as fast as he could. He was good at soccer, so he ran pretty fast.

I looked back at my friends for support.

“Go after him!” They yelled, and their cheering cries got my legs moving quickly.

It seriously was like the running scene in “My Best Friend's Wedding.” I went after him, running like the crazy girl I never thought I'd be, asking for him to be my boyfriend. There were so many other kids coming back from recess, and they probably heard me, but now I don't want to think about how I embarrassed myself.

He was too fast for me to continue chasing him. When I finally realized what I was doing, I stopped going after him. Later that day, I told my friends to stop thinking about that. It was over. I think being rejected took away the magic that surrounded that first crush. All I wanted was to forget him. And that's what I did. I didn't even look at him anymore. I didn't acknowledge his presence when he was around.

A year later, during a dull mathematics class, someone tapped on my shoulder. It was him. The awkwardness between us had already vanished, so I looked back. In fact, I was too busy that year studying for Military School's entrance examinations to pay attention to my old feelings.

“Do you remember what you asked me a year ago?” He asked me, and looked really nervous.

“No,” I lied. I was starting to feel nervous myself.

“Well, you asked me if I wanted to be your boyfriend. The – the answer is yes.”

“What?”

He caught me completely off guard.

“The answer is yes,” he repeated, this time confidently.

I don't know what got into me, but I was suddenly feeling hurt. My pride spoke louder, and I caught myself saying “I was too crazy back then. Things are different now.” Those were really harsh words, but I didn't mean to be rude. I really just saw him as a friend. Although today I blame myself for being rude, it makes me happy to think he actually tried fighting for something he had lost.

Unfortunately, our time had already passed. He was disappointed, but he didn't give up. He continued doing his best to show we should be together, but I wasn't interested in him the way I had been a year ago. When you're ten, eleven years old, relationships are like butterflies. They're beautiful, but too delicate in a time when we're still figuring out who we are and what we want from life.

We at least became friends. One day he told me that when I was chasing him the day I expressed my feelings for him, he tripped and fell, and hurt his knee because of that. I didn't see him falling, and it makes me feel bad to think I caused all that. But I can't help thinking that maybe there's a scar left there on his knee. A scar that says he was once desperately chased by a girl who loved him.

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