It’s February 14th, which means all over the world lovers are cloying and singles are bitter. People seem to fall into one of two categories: those who love Valentine’s Day and those who think it’s a load of crap. B. and I are somewhere in the middle. Valentine’s Day isn’t a big deal for us, but we don’t furiously protest it either. He’ll send me lilies, I’ll make him something sweet (like chocolate covered fruit), and so it goes.
Today seems like a good day to tell the tale of our romance. Not the entire thing, because it’s kind of long and I’m kind of lazy, but a start.
A Story About Love
Part I: Fireworks
B. and I met on the Fourth of July 2006. I was 15 and he was a day away from turning 19, so let’s just say he was 19. This was really more like the day he met me, because if the truth be told, then I must admit I’d been nursing a secret crush on him since August 2004.
Back in ’04, I was a freshman and he was a senior at the same high school. I was a nobody, but B. was high-profile, so I knew exactly who he was. He played varsity baseball, was editor of the school newspaper, and very well-known for being gorgeous and intelligent.
Time went on, as it tends to do, B. went to college, and I developed crushes on boys who actually knew I existed. One such crush was a young man whom I shall dub, “Stiva,” to protect his anonymity. I met Stiva through mutual friends toward the end of my sophomore year and fell smitten fast. Stiva was older than me and back home for the summer after his first year of college. He had graduated with B. the year before, but I had no idea they were friends.
By the time Fourth of July came around in 2006, Stiva and I were definitely dating, but not a couple. Our group of friends had a party that evening, and Stiva said he was going to bring along one of his other friends – someone I’d never met. I impatiently awaited their arrival to the party, but honestly didn’t give much thought to the mystery man Stiva was bringing along. When they got there and B. was the one to climb out of Stiva’s Jeep, I was surprised. When Stiva said, “Whitney this is B.,” I said, “I know.” So polite, you guys, and not at all like a stalker. If you’d given me 1,000 guesses about who would show up to the party that night, B. would not have been one of them.
However, as I already said, I was smitten with Stiva and my eyes were only for him. That night, under the fireworks, I sat between Stiva and B., giddy with girlish infatuation and sure I was sitting next to the man I was going to marry. If ever it were possible to be so right and so wrong at the same time, it was then and there: July 4, 2006.