I was thinking of a guy I had a crush on when I was in school. He was actually my older brother’s best friend and they had a band. They would come to our house and set up in the living room to play songs of the day. Randy, Mickey, Byron, and my brother, John. Their names are perfect for a sixties rock band.
My first love was Randy. A genuine crush. I tried everything I could think of to get him to notice me, but of course, he never did. He was 5 or 6 years older than me, after all.
There was a Halloween party at our house and Randy dropped a medallion that was part of his costume and I found it in the grass. I was over the moon because I was the one who found it and returned it to the owner. He said, “Thanks,” and nothing more.
My family went to Goldhead State Park for a week and he came down for a day or two. We were going on a row boat ride and I was completely mortified when I fell into the boat. He teased me by saying, “Well, that’s one way to get into a boat.” Crushed by my crush.
I never told him that he was THE ONE.
He joined the military and was sent to Germany during the Vietnam War and something bad happened to him. I never found out what. He wasn’t the same when he returned. Gone was the fresh-faced high-school boy and in its place was a man haunted by memories.
I saw him once after he got out of the military at my brother’s house. They played guitars together just like old times, and just like old times, he didn’t acknowledge my presence. I was just my older brother’s little sister. I heard he was gay, which explained why he never looked at me when I was young and cute.
Lately, he has appeared in my dreams, looking like that fresh-faced high school boy. The smile is bright and his eyes dance with fun and mischief. Just the way I remember. Why, after not thinking about him for 30 years has he arrived back in my dreams? Is this the beginning of senility? Dementia? Alzheimer’s?
Or am I just remembering a pleasant time in my life when the world revolved around a pretty fresh-faced high school student with dark hair, a devastating smile, and absolutely straight teeth? I am not going to try to find him, assuming that he is nothing like the guy I remember. I don’t want to move any of the furniture around in my memory because he will fade away or morph into something else.