I can remember the exact moment I first fell in love. I don’t think age has anything to do with it. I think you can feel as much when you’re 16 as you can when you’re 60.
My first love was Oscar*. When he sauntered into the fast food chain where I worked for pocket money, sports bag slung over one shoulder, perfectly balancing out his lopsided smile, that was it for me. In all my gangly, awkward teen glory, I was hooked: link and sinker. He was all charm, an Abercrombie & Fitch model in the flesh. Shame he was a little on the simple side. And by little I mean he had swallowed ‘The Idiots Guide to Nothing’. Then populated ‘Idiot Town’. Then written ‘Dumb & Dumber’.
It started innocently enough. My dream boat had a girlfriend, who, ironically enough lived on my street. It wasn’t until I returned from an overseas holiday with the family to find him newly single that I let myself believe that Adonis would fall for me. I won’t bore you with the very PG details, everyone had a first love, so you know how the plot goes. But let’s just say when he asked me to help him study for his school certificate, he legitimately needed to study. Handsie stuff had to wait.
I couldn’t write a novel on our romance. I could barely fill an entire blog entry on good old Oscar, as it was over in a blink of an eye. The most potent memory is sitting in an empty bathtub surrounded by two of my best friends while a house party raged around us, bawling. Oscar had moved on, quite publicly. Yeah, ouch.
However it was the aftermath of the first relationship of my life that taught me that my heart wasn’t just a muscle made of flesh. I’d never felt anything so painfully agonising than heartache. And truly, despite two further long term, more mature relationships that both ended badly, I don’t think I have again. I don’t know if scar tissue has formed, making me immune to that kind of pain, or if Cat Stevens had it right and the first cut really is the deepest. But god damn, that shit cray.
I see Oscar from time to time, and it’s almost weird when I don’t feel something. A girlfriend joked the other day that we would end up together: our own version of a childhood sweetheart usually reserved for the silver screen. I doubt it. Whilst he be cute and all, the boy was a few croissants short of a continental breakfast. And in the real world; beauty fades, dumb is forever.