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Someone smart once said that a life is just a string of moments in our memory. Some other smart person also once said that we are just a product of those moments, and who we are today is defined by our experiences. But as humans, we define our existence through suffering, and what is the greatest suffering and joy and everything in between that we feel except love. However, if defining our existence through suffering, we can define our most intense moments through love, and thus the way to perhaps define life through a string of moments shared with another person. By no means does that have to apply to all parts of our personality, but on the romantic front, are we just defined by our past experiences? Has past loves warped me into who I am?

I know something about love.

We were 15, and he was my friend first – our phone conversations would last 8 hours at a time. Our parents were livid. We spend all our time together and I was hopelessly obsessed with his dark hair that hung right below the chin (remember those Cobain grunge hair of the early 90s?) He had dark chocolate eyes, and after spending every day together from April to June he leaned over and said “I think I am in love with you” and held my hand. We were sitting in his basement playing cards because it was too hot to go out hiking like we often did.

We didn’t kiss at that moment. Both of us had only kissed once before, we weren’t yet sure of our selves. We kissed a week later in a park, half a mile away from our high school. I remember being scared out of my mind, and closing my eyes out of fear rather than anything else. I remember thinking 30 seconds into it “What is the big deal, why do people like it?” Another 30 seconds and I was hooked.

My first moment was with him, we went hiking in the forest by his house, there was an abandoned wooden bridge over a creek, we climbed on it and kissed for hours. I remember the way the light looked green because of the thick trees, and how our legs would swing down 20 feet above water. We shared many moments like that. When it rained, we would sneak out into his old tree house and lie there and hold each other and watch the lightning and he would tell me how much he loved me and how we will be together forever and ever. We never had anyone before. We thought this was it.

He wrote me poetry and songs (he played the piano). They were terrible, but naturally I thought they were the most beautiful thing in the world. We stayed up talking on the phone until 6 am. He left to go to Germany for the whole August, and he never wrote. I thought the post office lost it. I wrote him letter that I never mailed cause we promised to do that and exchange them when we got back if his letter with his address would get lost. He didn’t call me the day he returned though I took that day off both jobs I was working.

He called me the next day and I called in sick and came over to his house. I remember I shaved my legs and put on new underwear and curled my hair cause I wanted to look so beautiful. He didn’t kiss me hello. And he brought me back a mug. When we got to his house he started fondling me, his eyes were closed and his fingers immediately went under my shirt. He still hasn’t kissed me. I stopped him. He turned around and said “I just want to be your friend, except I really like your breasts and I was wondering if we can still hook up after we break up?” He was a fucked up 15-year-old boy, and I spent the next 10 minutes throwing up in his bathroom. His mom drove me home and he still called me every night asking me what I thought about this or that girl that girl he wanted to ask out. I asked why he broke up with me. He told me: “I never asked a girl out before, and you were cute, but once I could get you, I figured I could get someone better, you are not nearly as pretty as Kate is - I think I will ask her out next” I remember hating “Kate” for the next 2 years. He told me if I lost some weight he might give us another chance, so I started making my self throw up every time I ate. I did drop from a size 9 to a 6. He never said hi to me at school – he said he didn’t want people to know we dated, but he called every day. Except my best friend convinced me to ignore his phone calls. I wasn’t fat to begin with, I was very developed, and dropping all this weight that way made me look vapid. I dyed my hair black again (something I stopped doing for him), I picked up smoking (which I also quit for him). I started to skip class and hang out with the “bad” kids. Me and him stopped speaking.

You've gotta want it bad

I wanted all new friends cause the old ones were friends with him, that’s how I met John. He told my friend Dave he wanted to “hit it with the skinny Russian chick with the huge tits” and it made me feel pretty. He called me the next day and asked me out. I said yes cause his friends were cool, and people knew him, and he was big and tall and strong and Goth, and the first time I let him kiss me was the next day after lunch, when the other guy was watching.

That’s how I met John, we broke up and got back together 3 times within two months, we went to homecoming together on our first date, except never made it to the dance cause we got trashed in his friend’s basement and he was begging me for head in the bathroom before we passed out on the floor. He actually treated me like gold and we ended up together for 2 years. He dropped out of school, we smoked pot, dropped acid and snuck into clubs. He wanted to marry me. He said he knew he loved me when we went to the zoo together. I never saw the coloration.

He thinks we shared moments, but I was bored, and I can’t think of any. He told me I was beautiful, smart, love of his life. I yawned and picked fights to keep my self entertained.

that guy's got into your blood, go out and get him
you want him to be the very part of you

I told him I would marry him, while I cheated on him left and right. I felt guilty the first time, but not the 5th. John was no angel at this point either, by any means, he smoked more pot than anyone I knew and after he lost his job mainly stayed home with his N64. I wasn’t happy, but he worshipped me still, and I couldn’t find a good enough reason to leave until I met HIM.

…That makes you want to breathe, here's the thing to do...

He was my waiter at Denny’s of all places. He was already in college, a psychology major. My friends gave my number to him, he called me the next day to make sure I woke up for school – I told him I had to go and I was worried I was going to oversleep. We talked on the phone every night since than. I told John this new guy I was always with was gay, John was too high all the time now to care. We were just friends first, except he kissed me, and I remember that moment so clearly.

We just got pizza and we were sitting out on the ground in the parking lot of my friend’s work. It was late May and it smelled like grass and cars and fresh pizza. His eyes were almond shaped, dark brown with specks of amber and green. I remember thinking how this was so perfect. So wrong and random and utterly beautiful. He was striking like an exotic animal you admire but fear to touch – like a panther. ¼ Irish, ¼ Cherokee, ½ Cuban, he was out of the ordinary – he had a button nose, full lips, light tan colored skin and dark auburn curls that ended right below his shoulders. He also had his tongue, nipples and belly button pierced. He had cuffs and collars, not like the toy ones I had, but real bondage stuff. He wrote short stories and poetry, good poetry. He had his own place – very impressive to someone still in high school, though it was 2 weeks before graduation. We kissed and kissed and kissed some more. It didn’t feel like cheating did before, I was till with John, but this wasn’t just a cheap make - out in the back of a car. I felt something… Something I tried to so hard to fill while with John,

I felt complete when I was with him. He knew I was seeing someone. He felt so awful. On the way home we listened to “Question of Lust” by Depeche Mode. The moments….. We spent every day together and I practically lived with him all summer. John didn’t care what I did because he had weed, he didn’t even make it to my high school graduation. , I would only see John once every 3 or 4 weeks. With him, everything was a moment. We would drive out into nowhere, lay out a blanket and lay naked under the stars. I lost my virginity to him. He, unlike John, wasn’t a virgin by any means. We made love in pouring rain in a church garden we snuck into. We played games that even I will still blush thinking about. He would write me into his stories, he left flowers on my door steps and bought me sexy presents. We would spend almost every night in some dark diner in the city, him – writing, me – reading and worshipping him. When I had to go to school in the fall, we were still technically together.

Tell him that you're never gonna leave him
Tell him that you're always gonna love him
Tell him, tell him, tell him, tell him right now

He gave me his sweatshirt to keep him close by, we were now a 2 hour drive apart. Therefore, we fell apart. I suddenly had rent and no friends and a new scary school where I had to work hard at, and no car. He didn’t want to deal with it, he lashed out at me for being so far away, he made new friends and not introduce me out of spite cause I would get jealous. I tried to kill my self, and he laughed at me and called me a manipulative little bitch. And I was, But oh, how I loved him, and how he still loved me. How passionate we were when we did see each other. How intense, we burned to be together, we burned each other to a crisp. But those moments, every kiss with him was an eternity in our own little world. I moved back home and switched to UMD from UMBC but it was too late.

I know something about love.
You gotta show it and make him
See the moon up above. Reach out and get it
If you want him to make your heart sing out
And if you want him to only think of you...

We both have done too much damage, our breakup lasted 2 months, he hit me, and I forgave him. The sex got violent, forceful even, and yet we stayed until it got too much, I started hanging out with an old friend, who I slept with, more out of revenge because I was still so in love with him and he was in love with me, but oh, we were too proud to do anything about it. 3 days later we broke up. I ran into him a few times since than. We are barely on speaking terms. We fucked each other up with the moments. It’s dangerous with those things, like a drug. We ODed….

No one else was worth mentioning since than until I met Jason, who loved me and put up with my issues, and boy, did I have a lot at this point. We were in love, it wasn’t like that one time, but just as strong. Secure, mature kind of love I needed to feel. Except I fucked it up. And maybe its too late cause that’s how it always is, two years later and we are broken up because I am too fucked up to dare to take him back.

Ever since the world began it's been that way
For man and woman were created to make love their destiny

Then why should true love be so complicated?

…And now I met someone else, someone I think I could fall for, except I probably fucked it up already, I know I fucked it up already, because that’s just who those moments made me I guess, or my quest for them… I think I scared him off, no need to be sad though cause I can honestly say…

I know something about love…

song: The Exciters - Tell Him

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