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Crushes, Puppy Loves and Other Warm Fuzzies June 2, 2014

Posted by michaelnjohns in Uncategorized.
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I was reading another blog today, and the author encouraged us to comment on our first loves.  

My first love was a beautiful blonde girl in first grade.  There were many other crushes. We went our separate ways, and none of them ever really seemed to notice me. I could call them by name– to this day, their names are branded on that “childhood memories” corner of my heart.  And my adolescent corner.  And my adult corner.  Of course they are years older and a lot different looking than in grade school.  And of course I love my wife passionately, but I think I still love each of the objects of my school-boy crushes.  Through the miracle of social networking websites, I have reconnected with this girl, and she is still beautiful.  But unlike those romantic hopeless ones who have reconnected after years and left their spouses for one another, no, we are both in good committed relationships.  So we’re just good friends, and I think she’s turned out pretty cool.

My wife and I met a lady a few years ago and for several years she lived next door to us.  We had meals together all the time, laughed a lot and cried too, sometimes, and weathered crises, including weather related crises and relationship crises.  Nothing ever came of that but she knew how I felt about her.  I met a lady more recently and we got to know each other through talking every day at work.  Nothing ever came of that, but she, too, knew how I felt about her.  I had fallen in love with them, in that schoolboy type crush kind of way.  Nothing could ever come of it, in my mind because I am in a solid, committed relationship and that’s where I want to stay.  But I loved their laughter, their smile, the way they thought and dreamed, the way they talked about life, and yes, I thought they were very pretty.  And even more recently, I’ve added to my list two writers, fellow bloggers.  I look into their writing, I see their souls, darkness, light, and in between, and I see those faces and those eyes in their profile pictures, and have met both of them face to face at least once, and I confess, I am infatuated again.  And again.  And again.  But I’m steady, I’m set, I’m not fickle, if the last almost-30-years say anything about it.

My Grandpa said “all women are the same,” and never really elaborated on it. I don’t profess to understand what he meant by his (probably sardonic) comment.  I loved my Grandpa and I thought he was fun when I was a boy, and even funnier when he let me in on more of the adult-ish jokes he told and comments he used to make.  The older he got, the more outspoken he got about things, so I imagined the remark was intentionally cutting about women.  He was married until she died, and didn’t remarry.  I hear people say similar things, like how they’re all crazy, all mean, all self centered, all that.  And that may have been true for them.  They weren’t often touchy-feely, and my dad grew up learning that kind of non-expressiveness.  But I know Grandma loved Grandpa in that crazy way my mom and dad still do.  Why don’t you take better care of yourself?  Why don’t you drink less?  Why haven’t you fixed this?  Are you going to finish that?  And so on.  Maybe he meant it in a kind of frank decisiveness, I’ve made my choice and there’s no reason to look at anyone else, since they’re all the same.  Which is kind of romantic.  And I looked into Grandma’s eyes and knew, she also loved him in that sweet, romantic way I love my own wife and don’t want to figuratively “go shopping” ever again.  

The crazies may be accurate, but I look around and if I look closely enough at any one, without fail, I always see that fragile, frightened, sometimes scarred or hurt, self-discovering, slowly opening flower blossom side.  It’s what charms me.  I have the same reflection in my own soul.  In a warm fuzzy way, my own way of thinking about grandpa’s comment, I think he was right. All women are alike.  They’re all amazing, beautiful treasures.

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