I had my first real boyfriend in my first year of college. His name was Eric, and he was admittedly, a little bit weird.
Our relationship was based mostly around making out with occasional, infrequent conversations about the meaning of life (just kidding – we talked about what happened on Friends and the weather).
At one point, while making out, we came up for air and he said he wanted to marry me (yes, I am that good of a kisser).
I was 18 year-old, and I remember considering it.
I remember thinking to myself: “I’m totally ready for this. I’m 18 years-old. I already know everything. I am totally ready to be someone’s wife. I’m going to be such a good wife. I’ve seen my mom be a wife, and it looks super easy. You just have to cook a big meal on Sundays. It’s not hard, at all. You just have to wear a ring and not have sex with anyone else… That’s easy. I kind of like this guy too. I should totally get married. I love weddings. Also – he has a car, and I need a car.”
They say absence makes the heart grow fonder, and it totally does.
I remember Eric going home for the weekend… (This was before the days of texting and sexting – so we were incommunicado), and when he got back to the dorms on Sunday night, we ran into each other’s arms like he had been in Iraq for a year-and-a-half.
After we made out in the hallway for at least eight minutes, we pulled apart and Eric excitedly presented me with a wrapped gift. It was my first real present from a “boyfriend” (which was a pretty big deal for me at the time)…
I ripped off the paper and saw it… A leather, patchwork purse.
It looked a lot like this:
(I should note: I’ve never been able to fake excitement – which is probably why I never got into acting or sales. I am honest, to a fault. Meaning, I tell the truth no matter what. Meaning, I have offended some (many) with my honesty. Meaning, Christmas at my house is a lot of “oh”, and then asking for the gift receipt.)
I remember thanking Eric, and trying to find something nice to say about it.
I also remember thinking: He doesn’t get me.
I remember thinking that I should probably base a relationship on more than just passionate neck-biting… I should probably find someone that I am genuinely interested in, and who is interested in me… I should probably find someone who shares my sense of humor… I should probably find someone who pushes me to be better… I should probably find someone who wants the same things that I want… I should probably find someone who is also my best friend... I should probably find someone who gets me…
And, guess what? I did.