As time goes by I find myself increasingly looking backwards, wondering how people are whom I cared about as long ago as high school; wanting to see friends who still matter, missing a piece of my life that is gone forever but comes back suddenly in unexpected ways.
We were a couple for eighteen months. He was two years ahead of me in school, a senior to my sophomore. We were one anothers first love. It sounds corny but it's true. He was a serious person, excellent in school, a fine guitarist who played in one of the many amateur rock bands so prevalent in those days. I was mad about him.
He's one of the only persons I remember who knew what he wanted to be in life: a pilot. He had it all planned out; ROTC at Loyola, then fly school in the USAF, then go commercial. That is exactly what he did. Oh, and he married one of my best friends.
He wanted to get married after I graduated high school. I was only in my Junior year and already flirting with a new boy with whom I had one date. I couldn't see tying myself down in marriage. Besides, I was 16 years old! I broke up with him on my 17th birthday and it was painful. By then I was falling for the boy who, seven years later, would become my husband. I actually thought I could ease his pain and assuage my guilt by setting him up with a close friend who was infatuated with him. She probably gave him everything he needed, especially devotion. They were married after he graduated college. She couldn't wait to get out of her house. They were both Catholic. My dad liked him a lot but he couldn't abide my marrying a Catholic. We're Protestants--Baptists.
I don't know if you can see the sweetness in both boys. I suppose to anyone who didn't know them, they look like typical teenagers. A few weeks ago I saw a current photo of him and didn't recognize him at all. It was a shock. I haven't seen him since 1970. What did I expect? I guess I didn't expect him to remind me of his father. He's still married to the same girl, they have two grown children and he's now retired at the tender age of 61.
But I do remember the beautiful boy with whom I fell in love thanks to this photo which brought a smile to my face and many happy memories.
Life can be so sweet. Tempest Fugit.