Moving along part 7-Love on the rocks

If you ask my Mother about me growing up, she will always say the same thing.  ” She was the perfect child.  She was always happy as a baby, always coercing a smile out of someone, sweet in nature, everyone loved her……  Until she turned 13, then all hell broke loose.”


Everything happened when I was 13, what did she expect?  I had my first boyfriend, took my first drink of alcohol, smoked my first cigarette and made my very first decision about my Father on my own.  I would never go to his house again over the summer, I was done.  I became disheveled, disoriented , the real world starting screaming for answers from me that I wasn’t prepared to answer.

What are you going to do with your life

Who are you

Why are you here, why are any of us here

What is the fucking meaning of all this madness


I met my first boyfriend at my Uncle’s resort in a small town in Wisconsin.  A couple of times a year my Mom would make the trip down and us kids would tag along.  My Mother gave us free rein when we got there.  We were trusted to hang out with everyone else’s kids down by the river, or just across from the railroad tracks.  Can you imagine?  If someone did that now, the authority’s would be called.  But we survived, no- we thrived in our weekends of freedom.


He had blonde hair and the bluest eyes I had ever looked into, and I was stupefied that he was interested in me.  We spent that summer walking the bluffs , sitting by the river, drinking alcohol, taking the ferry across the river to the tiny floating restaurant on the other side of the Mississippi.   His Mother would drive the two of us and his brother and my cousin into town to see movies and we would sit in the backseat holding hands and listening to Fleetwood Mac Rumors.  We spent a lot of time listening to music, Rita Coolridge,  Head East.  But mostly I remember Fleetwood Mac’s rumors from that summer.

Every day Tim’s mother would tell me the same thing ” don’t have sex with him, your to young.”  Every day I would tell her that I wasn’t going to.  Until one day she must have seen something in my eyes that had changed and she said ” Don’t have sex with him, but if you do, use protection, your both to damn young to have kids.”   And so one night , on the banks of the Mississippi river, on a bed of rocks.  Yes, I said rocks.  We were in a tent. We professed our undying love for each other and I lost my virginity.

My adult voice screams at me right now as I write this.  ‘Your undying love?  You idiot, they all profess their undying love for you for one reason, and one reason only, to get what they all ultimately want.  You, with your clothes off, on your back. ‘  And then my thirteen year old voice steps in.   You remember your thirteen year old voice?  The one that was naive , and had never had your heart-broken.  The one where life had not yet tore you down and shed layers and layers of belief in the goodness of people,and love.  Yea, that one.  I miss that voice.   For the rest of this story, the story of my first love – I am going to let that thirteen year old talk.  Not the fifty year old.

Back to the tent:  If anyone tells you their first time having sex was good, I will tell you they are full of bullshit.  Your awkward, you have no idea what you are doing, it doesn’t feel good, it feels scary and uncomfortable(especially if you’re in a tent, on the rocks) and like your committing the worlds worst sin and letting your parents down, and yourself.  I had all those thoughts and a million more that night.  When the ‘act’ was done, I walked up the road to my cousin’s house and told her about it.  That is all I remember about that night.  I don’t remember once thinking that it felt good.

The next day my Uncle drove us all to the house on the rock.

I think there were five of us there, walking from room to room, taking in all there was to see in that place.   All I really remember is being around a sea of people and feeling completely alone.   I had just left a monumental piece of myself with someone, back by the banks of the river.  A piece I would never get back again.   A piece I was taught my entire life to save for the most important person in my life…and I just wanted to go back to him.  I wanted to run back and make sure that he felt the same way, that I hadn’t just been duped into believing I was that important to someone.  I wanted confirmation that the second most important man in my life hadn’t just proven himself to the second most important one to let me down.

The years have escaped me now, the memories are faint, but here is what I do remember.  Tim and I wrote each other every day for a year after that night.  We saw each other whenever we could, which was not often as we lives 400 miles apart. We talked on the phone whenever his Mother or my Mother would allow us to spend the money on long distance phone calls.  I had boxes and boxes of love letters from him.  Beautifully written letters, that I would gush when I read to my girlfriends.  Letters I would spread across my peach bedspread of my white canopy bed, while listening to the latest love song on the radio, and I would read over and over again, until they were imprinted on my soul.

letters 1.jpg

And then …for reasons I can’t recall.  Probably , mostly because we were separated by miles and states, him in Iowa, me in Minnesota.  The letters got fewer and fewer, until we decided we had to let one another move on and find someone else.  But I never got over him, he was (is) my first love and always will be.  I would chase that feeling I had for him for a very , very long time after that and never find it again.

That is what happened to me when I turned 13.   I fell in love, and anyone who has ever been in love knows that it will lift you to the top of the mountains , and then it will body slam you against the sharpest rocks.  It awakens you and kills you at the same time.  It fills you up, and then empties you.  It feels like heaven , and then devours you in the flames of hell.   It’s like a drug you know is going to destroy you, but one you will sacrifice yourself for, if you could just feel like that again for ten more minutes.


the notebook 12.jpg


Dreams/ Fleetwood Mac/ Rumours

Now here you go again, you say
You want your freedom
Well who am I to keep you down
It’s only right that you should
Play the way you feel it
But listen carefully to the sound
Of your loneliness
Like a heartbeat drives you mad
In the stillness of remembering what you had
And what you lost, and what you had, and what you lost
Thunder only happens when it’s raining
Players only love you when they’re playing
Say women they will come and they will go
When the rain washes you clean, you’ll know, you’ll know
Now here I go again, I see the crystal visions
I keep my visions to myself, it’s only me
Who wants to wrap around your dreams and,
Have you any dreams you’d like to sell?
Dreams of loneliness,
Like a heartbeat, drives you mad
In the stillness of remembering, what you had,
And what you lost and what you had and what you lost



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