I was thirteen-years-old when I had my first kiss.  It was wet. I didn’t understand what was happening. Was it supposed to feel this way? I’ve watched enough teen sitcoms and romantic comedies to know how a kiss should look like. Assuming it felt as great as having a killer soundtrack while you’re making out. But there was no Sixpence the Richer playing during my first kiss. We were surrounded by our other classmates who were also curious. We were almost teenagers with raging hormones.

But it has to feel better than just wet right? I was thirteen and trying to understand my own body. Puberty for boys is discovering how to pleasure yourself. Meanwhile, girls have to go through blood once a month. We were confused on how we were supposed to feel good. For me, I thought having my first kiss would feel amazing. Instead, it was nothing but wet. The worse part was he wasn’t even my boyfriend. It was only curiosity.

Now, we are not on speaking terms. I last saw you four years ago.  It was just a wave and a simple hello. Nothing but a few seconds passing by the street. But for some reason, our mothers still talk. I am updated from time to time about where you are and how you’re doing.

I was fourteen-years-old and he was a year younger than me at the time. It felt weird being older than he was. I was not aware this was normal and that it was okay if a girl was a little older. But I kept it a secret because I was scared. It did not matter how much I liked him, what mattered was his age. Imagine being fourteen and being called a cougar. We didn’t break up because of how I felt about our minor age difference. We broke up because he called me crazy and I took offense to it.

It took me a few years to talk to you again. But all I asked was for a book and nothing else. I didn’t bother to ask how you’re doing or hows college. Nope, I just wanted to know if you had a book I needed to borrow.

I was sixteen and I was slightly clueless. It was hard for me to notice if someone is flirting with me. When I asked you who you liked, you gave me clues. I was oblivious to the fact you were trying to say it was me. I spent the past few weeks still smiling about our nine-hour conversation.  I hoped you liked me back. Well, you did but I was too late to read your subtle hints. You were already dating someone else.

I’m happy you’re with someone who was able to read you well. I treated your subtilty like some code I needed to decipher.  Though all I needed was an answer to whom you liked back in high school.

I was eighteen and it was a doozy. They told to test the waters instead I went overboard. I won’t go into detail about every person I’ve dated. Heck, if I did it would take a novel or two. But one caught my eye, he was quite the catch. He was charming and knew how to put up an act. He was an aspiring actor, perhaps he needed some practice. But I didn’t like the fact I was your test run for love scenes. Because I believed the charade up to the point I saw you kiss someone else. Drunk and trying to find motivation for your next background role.

Goodluck on your career I guess. Saw you on TV once and then I turned it off.

I think I was nineteen when I met you. You were cute, sweet, and knew how to make a girl fall. If anyone has a masters in flirtation, you’d be the one. You had me thinking you’d stick for the long run. But no, come a few days before Christmas day. You broke my heart and wrapped it in a bow. I spent months crying about what have I done wrong.  Was I too clingy or too needy? Did my depression turn you away? Or was it because I wasn’t quick to jump into bed you decided I was a waste of your time.

Now, we are sort of on speaking terms. I’ve followed you back on Instagram and friended you on Facebook. I was able to move on when I realized you were a jerk. Perhaps you’d changed but I’m not betting on second chances to see if you did.

The dreaded twenties, I hate Tinder and OkCupid. Twenty-two matches a day, gave me an interesting set of people. The people I’ve met either want hook-ups or dress me up in a metal Bikini like Princess Leia. One thing I’ve learned about online dating is to leave out you’re a fan of Star Wars. I didn’t like any of the invitations. From having sex while Darth Vader’s theme song played in the background to dressing up as Darth Maul in bed. The second one still makes me wonder how he watches Phantom Menace.

I once met a girl who told me I wasn’t a bisexual. She told me I was a confused lesbian. Another refused to date me because I’ve been with men. Even my sexuality worked against me. I never want to go back to Tinder again.

And then before I’d ask out a magician I’ve met on Tinder, an old High school friend gave me an offer. He knew of my dating history and pitched a guy he thought I’d like. I never liked blind dates but I thought what the heck. A year later, we are still together. Someone who was able to balance my crazy, understand my experiences, and love me.

We had a conversation about death the first time we met. Again we talked about death.  It’s a gruesome and depressing subject but for some reason with me, it’s a topic unavoided. He told me how he wants me to be alive and I didn’t have to die today. He wanted us to grow old together. He wanted to see where my future could take me and if he can be part of it. I cried when he said he wanted me to be alive. I’ve had others tell me this as well but he was the first boyfriend to say it too.

He is the first relationship I’ve ever had who had me unashamed of my mental illness. The first of many who didn’t see my anxiety as a character trait.  He didn’t see my depression as a burden but something to overcome. Out of everyone I’ve ever been with he made me cry because I was happy.

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