Teenage love and angst

"Milford High School, Milford High School, We are proud of thee. Always faithful, always loyal, always we shall be. Colors red and white will fly for old Milford high. To our dear old Alma Mater which will never die"

After my Mom married my Dad but before we moved to Gahanna, our new family moved into a rental home in Day Heights, Ohio. We settled into a little house on a quiet street in this suburb of a suburb of Cincinnati, Milford. This move meant for the sixth time (out of seven) in my childhood, I would be the new kid in school.

I adapted pretty well this time around. Miss Fawley cast me as the lead in our musical, and we all had to memorize the alma mater for the fall concert. My new best friend was Richie Richmond, a mullet wearing Metallica freak that would have been considered a "hood". My arch nemesis was Joey Dobbs, a preppy loud mouthed know it all that convinced Ellen Ayre to go steady with him instead of me. But I quickly stopped caring about that, as soon as I laid eyes on her.

A year ahead of me and separated by 11 houses on Day Circle, Kim Miracle was my first real crush. From her pail skin to her dainty blond hair to her prairie skirts and lacy shirts, I knew I liked her as soon as I saw her. I would make an excuse to talk to her on the bus everyday, and about died when she put her hand on my shoulder during a party at a friends house. She was a dream and I just new she would wind up being my high school sweetheart.

Of course my grand plan never came to fruition. She barely knew I existed and we wound up moving away just before I got out of that awkward geeky stage when I was...............Oh wait, still there.

Just a few short years later I had forgotten about old Kim what's her name all together. I was 17, and my last new school was the best one yet. I was proud to be a member of the chorale, my new school's version of a show choir. I had another new best friend named Brad Stefanov, or Mr. Sparkle as my readers have come to know. My new arch nemesis was Bethany Lemaster, a crimped haired, NKOTB fan that annoyed me with her argumentative nature and jean jacket. And I had my first real girlfriend, Amber Richner.

2 grades behind me, she and I hit it off from the start. Our first date was our first dance, and we had three years of stomach churning, gag me with a spoon, sweetheartedness. I called her Princess, and I was her Pussycat. We were in love and gonna get married. So we thought nothing of it when my Dad's mini-van in a state park made a convenient place to....................um, yeah. Until...........

I will never forget that park ranger knocking on that fogged up window and demanding we get out. I told him not til we were dressed, but he made it clear we needed to do what he said. We were both scared, and embarrassed, and realized we were in trouble. Especially when he informed us he was gonna call our parents.

Even though we made up an incredibly believable story as to what we were doing, we both still thought it was probably the end for us. And the end of the world. But we didn't break up, at least not then. However, eventually, things ran their course and we both moved on.

Memories...................

As I sat down to write tonight, I knew what the topic would be. Stories of my past that might possibly relate to something today. Now I will let you all know why.

My son Ben has become a neat kid. He knows who he is and what his passion is. He is polite and respectful and has a huge heart. this weekend, he was excited to go to Ohayacon, an anime convention in Ohio. I dropped him and his best friend off at the convention center about 10am. By 4, they were ready to come home, so I drove back downtown to get them.

During the drive home, he told me that he knew the girl he has crushed on since 7th grade doesn't see him that way. And he is good with that, because he has outgrown it as well. He told me that they are friends and that he is glad they were never more because now they might not be if they had.

Follow that?

Wow. That's deep kid. Pretty grown up view on his version of "Kim Miracle"

Then there is John-Michael. Caught up in his first "high school sweetheart" relationship, they have had a rough weekend. And Little Red and I have been there to listen without trying to butt in. It is tough to watch him struggle with this, but I think back to that day in the van when I was a teen. How I thought the world was ending. And I look around at my life now and realize that those seemingly devastating moments in the past wound up being foot notes in the story of my life.

I shared this wisdom with my son, I told him there are 3.5 billion women in this world and that, chances are, he didn't hit pay dirt his first time out. I told him the story I just told you and explained that none of it mattered in the grand scheme of my life, because I wasn't supposed to be with that girl, and that I never knew that until I was well into adult hood. I asked him if he understood what I was trying to say?

He looked up, said mmm hmmm, and continued to kik message her on his tablet.

At least me sharing that story with him made me feel better.

From my first crush to my high school sweetheart to everyone in between and since, I am sure there will be many more stories I will share with the guys as they become men. It's my job as their father to talk them through the places along the path I have already been. And it is their job to roll their eyes, say "whatever dude", and not appreciate it until they are 41.

You know, that park ranger didn't even call our parents like he said he was going to, so we wound up ratting ourselves out for nothing.

Day # 702. I told John-Michael not to make me a grandpa before I am 50. As long as he doesn't do that, it will still be good to be me!








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