"let your boat of life be light, packed with only
what you need - a homely home and simple pleasures, someone to love and someone to love you,
enough to eat and enough to wear
and a little more than enough to drink:
for thirst is a dangerous thing"

Thursday, 14 February 2013

be my valentine....not

I have never really bought into Valentine's Day and the quote above is exactly how I feel. Call me a grinch if you must.  Firstly I do not like red roses (any colour except red) and I hate schmaltzy cards (and queueing to get into a restaurant).  I like to be told I am loved every day and not have it reserved for the one day of the year when everyone and their dog are being told that they are loved as well.  I love hand written notes left on bits of paper and a spontaneous bunch of sweet peas when they are in season.  That to me is romance.

Perhaps it is because I have only ever had one seriously romantic boyfriend in my life.  He also happened to be the "first boyfriend" and maybe this has something to do with it.  He wrote me cards and letters, celebrated every month that we were together with flowers (and cards and letters), he had names for the two children we would have one day and houses were identified where we would one day live. All this at 16 and 18!!  He was a soppy romantic and I fell for it (and totally enjoyed it) for 16 long months of my teenage life.  It took me 15 (and a half) months to realise that this guy was a tad controlling, he studied too hard and never wanted to go to parties (or let me go to parties).  OK, (confession) there was another guy who we (Lesley and I) stalked in the school corridors at school (and on the rugby fields) who had a wonderful smile, who winked (and smiled) at me which made my heart melt and made me realise that at 16, 16 months is far too long a time to be with one person.

The question I always ask myself is what is it about your first love that makes it stick in your mind forever?  I was over "first boyfriend" before I broke up with him so why am I still interested in what he is up to, where he lives and how his sisters are?  Our paths have crossed many times since we were at high school.  We have friendly and polite conversations (about where he lives, how talented his children are and where they travelled to this year and where they are skiing next year).  He even bought Dalene, Kathy and myself a whole bottle of "very expensive" wine in a rugby club one cold wintry afternoon. (How "expensive" can the best bottle of wine at a rugby club be?).  His wife is great and would fit in very well with my circle of girlfriends - she seems like fun and likes also likes wine (although he should have bought her a bottle of her own).  If Lesley was there she would have told him so.

I found this quote the other day:-

“You’ll always care about your first love. That doesn’t make you crazy, it just makes you human. When relationships end, it’s not so cut and dry. You carry everyone you’ve ever loved into every relationship thereafter.”

Ryan O'Connell

It is funny that thinking of Valentine's Day led me to think about first love and the "first boyfriend". 

I watch Amy and Kelly now in their teenage years and  I know how cruel those cards and roses that arrive at school can be.  There is always one girl in your class who gets all the cards and flowers.  She usually has the brownest legs in the class and an awesome name like Danielle or Samantha or Jade or Beverly.

If I can thank "first boyfriend" for anything it would be for the card which was delivered to my desk, all those years ago when I was an awkward 16 year old.   Jennifer's don't usually do well in the Valentine's Day race.  I am sure it was schmaltzy and had red roses all over it but whatever it said or was, it made me feel special for that moment.

So who am I to be cynical and ungrateful?

Happy Valentine's Day!! 

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