Moving On After Your First Love
It’s okay if it’s hard.
It’s been almost two years since I broke up with my first love. We met in 8th grade but didn’t date until our senior year of high school. At first we were friends and we hung out with the same group of people for movie nights. Then one day we started holding hands at those movie nights and we even had our first kiss there too. I remember that first kiss to this day — I felt warm and tingly down to my toes. It was the most electric first kiss I’ve ever had. Mind you, I had only had one other first kiss before him, but it doesn’t matter. I had never felt that way before.
Our romance played out over a couple of months. I asked him out to a school play, he rejected me, and then we were “just friends” for a bit. We’d flirt regularly and once, before our first kiss, he put his hand over my mouth and kissed it. Maybe that doesn’t sound romantic to you, but I had butterflies. After a few months of flirty banter we became official. We were dating.
The next three years were full of laughter, love, kisses, hand holding, and gazing into each other’s eyes. It was mushy in the best way. We were in love. We each had a significant other before we dated, but I don’t think either of us would’ve said we were ever in love with those people. What we had was new and exciting and everything you could want for your first love. It was safe and comfortable. We never fought. We had the same friend group. I might go so far as to say it was perfect because in that moment, it was.
I think it’s safe to say that regardless of who I love next, part of me will always love him. I thought we were going to get married. I never thought we’d break up. I never thought I’d be the one breaking both of our hearts, but things change and people grow apart.
Besides breaking up with him, trying to move on after him has been the hardest thing I’ve had to do. Even though I was the one to call it quits, I find myself reminiscing about old times and feeling heartbroken. How could I have called it off? Why did I ruin our relationship? The thing is, sometimes people don’t grow together and that’s okay.
One of the best things I can think of to push through the sorrow is this:
“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”
― Dr. Seuss
As much as I want to be sad about our breakup — and thinking about those times does make me sad — I can’t help but smile. I was so happy. I should cherish the time I spent being so full of joy and love. I learned a lot about love and trust in that relationship. Those are memories I never want to forget, and values that I hope to bring to my next relationship, whenever that may be. Even though I feel like I could never love again, I know that with time, I will.