But, I have figured it all out...and now I guess it is time for an update. I am not really even sure where to start, and to be honest...I am really not sure where the beginning of the story is. I guess it all started about twenty years ago. Twenty years ago...that is a really long time. And in the last twenty years, so much has changed drastically for me.
Twenty years ago, I fell in love for the first time. I met this boy from Louisiana, and he swept me off my feet in a whirlwind of ecstatic proportions. I remember looking at him at an Allman Brothers concert, seeing him with stars in my eyes. My head spun, and my eyes flickered, and the whole world swelled like the waves in the ocean. I remember laying on the floor in his house that night after the concert, talking, touching. I remember the taste of his lips, and the feel of his skin, and the pounding in my heart. I remember falling in love for the first time that night.
And we both fell hard. It was wonderful, in every way. Physically, we fit together like two pieces of a puzzle. And emotionally, our hearts pounded in unison. We stayed up all night, so often...talking and then making love. The pure feelings of first love, and the connection that was so strong. We poured our hearts out, filling each other's glasses with all of ourselves. Drinking from the glass, we became drunk with love and spinning in complete ecstasy.
We were both so young, and life's twists and turns began to dance as we both tried to forage our way in the world of young adults. Several years after that Allman Brothers concert, my first love's life began to follow a path that I did not understand, and a path that I was afraid of...a path that I did not like. He started doing cocaine a lot. Or maybe, I started realizing he did it a lot. I cannot really remember all the details so many years later, but I ended up breaking up with him because he did too much cocaine. The break up was rocky and ridden with lots of getting back together and then breaking up all over again...but eventually it ended, and it ended badly...at least that is the way I saw it.
Sometimes now, I am astonished to think that I broke up with someone for doing too much cocaine. Some years later, I would be shooting dope into my veins.
My first love also followed a path of addiction. Our paths were not the same, and our drug of choice was different, but the story is quite the same. We both took our addictions to their extremities, and we both lost a lot along the way. And we both got clean in the wake of a traumatic, life changing event. Mine being the Hurricane, and my first love had a stroke.
I heard of his stroke years after it happened when I was pregnant with my son. It took a while for the news to sink in, as I pictured him, sick and scared. Something inside me told me that I needed to try to contact him. I was not exactly sure why, and I was not exactly sure what I wanted to say...but I knew I needed to contact him, just to let him know that I was thinking about him. Maybe to let him know I was here for him. I had also heard that he had been clean for quite some time, and I realized that we probably had a lot in common.
I looked him up on My Space, and I may have even created my account then, just to send him a message. I sent him a message, giving him a short history of the crazy turns my life had taken since I last saw him. He did not know anything about the heroin, the Hurricane, and certainly not of my pregnancy. We messaged back and forth several times. That was about four years ago.
Over the years, we watched each other's posts on facebook...I watched him get engaged and buy a house. While he saw pictures of my son's young life as it unfolded. I watched him change his relationship status from engaged to single, and he watched the progression of my book as I began writing it. We commented on things sometimes, and we messaged several times throughout those years. All through the power of social media.
And really, I am not even sure how it all began. He came to my hometown this summer for a concert, and we made plans to meet at the show. But, Phish shows get hectic, especially for a single mom with a two year old in tow...and we did not find each other that night. I had printed a copy of my book to give him, but I guess that story would have to wait a while. He called me to see if I wanted to have lunch the day he left town, but I had to work that morning. I tried my hardest to get out of it, but it just wasn't possible.
And several months after that, the facebook messages became a little more frequent. We started chatting on facebook, and then those chats turned into phone calls and texts. Before I knew it, I was buying a plane ticket to fly to Texas and see him.
I had never left my son overnight when I bought that ticket, but I had arranged for him to stay with my mother that weekend. I had never had a single 24 hour period away from my son isince his birth almost two and a half years ago. I had not been on an airplane in so long, and I was hardly prepared for the new security checks. And I had not seen my first love in 15 years.
So, I flew to Texas, and had an incredible weekend. We stayed up talking at night, catching up on lost years. We laughed and laughed and laughed. And we made love all weekend long. And it was earth moving, and I was left trembling in ecstasy over and over again. I told him all my deep, dark secrets...even the ones I have never really breathed a word of. I felt so comfortable, like I was coming home. I left Texas, knowing my life was changed forever while my heart jumped and danced in my chest and the smile could not be wiped from my face.
We are both in recovery, and that is really important. I did not realize how important it was before I fell in love with my first love, all over again. But recovery is not something I share with most people in my life. There is an unique language that is only understood by those who have walked in the shoes of addiction and recovery. To share this with my love, I realize that we understand each other more than ever. And I realize how much I need that.
We had already made plans to meet in Louisiana for Thanksgiving, and this time I was bringing my son. Over the next few weeks, I discovered that my love wants to have a family. And I also realized that our goals are the same...we both want to be able to provide a secure and happy life for ourselves and our family. I realized that we were no longer the carefree kids we were when we first met, but we had both become mature and responsible adults. So, incredibly different than we were twenty years ago!
Thanksgiving was one of the most wonderful weeks of my life. My love was amazing with my son, astonishing me on several occasions with his insight and natural ability. And I realized just how amazing this whole thing really is. We met so long ago, and our lives lead us both down tumbling, destructive paths, but all that led us back to each other...and the bond is stronger than ever. It is really unbelieveable, I think sometimes. What are the chances of it all...that my first love and I would both follow a path of addiction seperately after we split up, that we would both be in recovery, and that the same love and connection was still there, flaming up more passionate and fiery than either of us imagined to be possible in our older, wiser, and more jaded state. It is incredible. And still a little unbelieveable at times.
I plan to move to Texas. I plan to go to graduate school there, studying to get am MFA in Creative Writing. I hope to be a college professor after I finish my degree. I will be able to focus on my writing for three years, while going back to school. And I think I can produce a really great work or two in those years. Afterward, I will still be able to focus on my writing, as a college professor. I will, of course, also have to focus on student's writing then, as well...but I will be able to focus on writing. I will be able to teach something I love. I spoke to a class at my university this past semester, talking to a small class about writing memoir. And it went really well. The professor that asked me to speak was blown away, and he said all the students were electrified. They asked a lot of questions, and it was really a great experience. I think I will like teaching. And it will be good for my son, and good for my family. Summers off is another really big perk, especially with kids.
So, I plan to move to Texas for graduate school. And I plan to live the rest of my life with my love. My first love. My last love. My only love. And I feel like I am the luckiest girl alive.