Thursday, June 21, 2018

There was this boy ...

There was this boy - a beautiful, smart, athletic boy.  I met him when I was 15 (nearly 16).  He was almost my first kiss except for the politics of the girls I was with (ah ... teenagers).  I do believe it was the first time I ever held a boy's hand.  I met him on an exchange between my Pathfinder group (Girl Guides) and a Girl Scout troupe in the States.

We girls slept in a Tipi in a friend's backyard.  It was a nice place to sleep.  I liked most of the girls we were with, but particularly the friend who was hosting us.  (She and I were pen pals for years and had stayed in touch forever - until this election - now I'm not sure anymore).  We all went to camp for a couple of hot days.  All I remember from the camp is stepping on a wasps nest and getting stung a few times.  The first aider at the camp just told me to stop whining and get over it.  I didn't like her after that.

But outside of official Scouting functions, we hung out as a bunch of teenagers, and a few boys joined us.  I seem to remember hanging out on some school swings when they found us.  And there was nothing but flirting going on.  They stuck close for the few days we were there.  The boys stole a stand-up cardboard cut-out from the movie theatre.  Sheena Queen of the Jungle.  I don't think we'd seen that particular movie - I do not remember which movie we had seen (might actually have been Ghostbusters).  But I sure remember the thrill of the boys stealing Sheena.

This boy rode his unicycle over one evening and rode around for us.  He was magical.  I had a serious crush.

I pined for him all the way home.  John Waite had just put out "Missing You" and I imagined that we had been torn apart by circumstance.  I so wanted someone to love me and I thought I had found it.  I came home with his football jersey.  I believe I sent it back to him eventually because he had asked me to - it was a loaner.

I honestly don't remember if we wrote letters to each other.  There may have been a phone call or two, but I didn't see him again until I was 17 or 18, maybe, when I drove down to visit the friend who had the tipi in her yard the last time.  I took off on a date with him one night while I was visiting.  Finally got the kiss I had wanted so badly.

I continued to have a crush on him for a while.  He was a nice guy.  He was going to be rich, which didn't impress me until he told me it was so he could support his mother in her old age!  I'm wondering now if that was a line ... But he definitely did achieve the rich thing!

I saw him one other time when his marching band came to Canada.  And then, a few years ago, I found him on Facebook.  We've chatted once or twice in that time, and I have enjoyed seeing the posts about his family and the travels they take - very adventurous family that can obviously afford that type of lifestyle.  I think it's great that he found an adventurous wife and that they get to do everything they want to.

This week I had had it with Trump and his holding babies hostage at the Mexican border so he could get his wall (I know, that's very simplified and it's not the whole story, but that's what the worst of it actually is.  He was doing this).  And I got so tired and frustrated that I stated on my Facebook page that anyone who could support this man and his policies should unfriend me.  Because I just can't understand how people can't see him for the Evil force he is.

And the boy unfriended me - with a kick in the pants calling me "combative".  If you know me, you know that the only way I would be combative is when I see danger - for me, my child, or the world.  I will, however, disagree with you and try to tell you why.  I do like to talk about things.

Anyhow, his un-friending me was not unexpected.  The boy was one of the people I was talking to specifically when I wrote the post, because I knew he had voted for Trump.  I had hoped that the people I knew who voted for Trump would have seen the light and stopped supporting him by now.  But no, this lovely, intelligent, charismatic boy has grown into a man whose political beliefs and ethics are different from mine.  He is a businessman and money is important to him to sustain his lifestyle.  But that anyone can ignore the lack of morality and ethics just so they can make more money - I don't understand it.

It makes me sad.  It bothers me to lose this boy from my teenage years.  But why?  Why was I holding on to him?  Still hoping he'd like me?  Still wanting his approval?  Thinking that he was the boy from 30 years ago and not the man that he's grown into since then?  Maybe I never knew him at all, but just dreamed up a boyfriend and put the boy's face on him.  Probably - and that is certainly not healthy.

I'm realizing that people are not necessarily who you think they are or who you want them to be (about time to "get" that).  It's a confusing time.  How can I be friends with people who can look past the horrible shit coming out of the States?  Some - people I've been friends with for a long time and kept in pretty regular contact with, who I don't want to lose from my life?  Well, I either don't discuss politics with them, or we have a healthy debate at the end of which we agree to disagree.  But people who are not invested in my life?  I guess I'm ready to let those ones go.  Maybe.  Working on it at least.

Post Script:  OR ... maybe not.  So I thought about this a lot (obviously - or I wouldn't have been writing a blog unless it was bothering me), and I continued thinking about it after I wrote this.  The whole thing didn't sit right with me, because I am NOT the kind of person to shunt someone out of her life just because of politics.  So I messaged him.  I said "You know what?  I should not have told people to unfriend me.  I've been thinking about it a lot.  I'd rather discuss it and try to understand why you feel that way." And I said I was sorry.

Phew!  That felt better.  And you know what?  He replied saying it didn't sit well with him either.  Now I hope he and I can have a discussion about it and I can start to understand where he's coming from.

Adulating - it's hard.

Please read the follow-up post.  It shows how I've found out more about this boy and who he has become:

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