The Pain of Youth

by Katie Harris

She was usually pretty open about her crush with her friends. Telling them how she felt, what she wanted to happen between the two of them. But some feelings even she never dared to delve into. Those feelings, deep down in the very core of her being. The ones that could mean everything, or nothing. The true ones. All the 'what ifs?' that had never been answered. The hope, the betrayal, the loss. The highs and the lows. The excitement for playing the game. Keeping everyone, including him, in the loop without giving the whole story away. What she should've told him...maybe. What she shouldn't have done. No. Those she had never explained to anyone. Not even herself.

It was that night that it dawned on her. It was too late to tell him everything. But it sure as hell wasn't too late to tell herself. There were so many things she had held back, so many things she kept locked within her soul. It was time to endure her pain. Time to move on.

The beginning was kind of a blur to her already dulled memory. She did remember that it had happened instantly. And though she could not, try as she might, remember them she knew that his first words were the glue between their souls. Though their relationship was kind of weird, and it may have seemed like a boyfriend, girlfriend one to others, she doubted it would ever get to that level. But she knew that that first word bond would last an eternity. As she got to know him it just got worse. He was sweet and understanding when she got into a horrible fight with her friends. He would always try and make her feel better. The only problem was that she thought he only wanted to be good friends.

Then one day, the worst happened. She found out he liked someone else. It was painful for her but she knew that there still might be a speck of hope. About a month passed. Nothing. But she still waited hopefully, still talked to him, wishing.It was one Friday when she talked to him on MSN that he told her he was finally going to ask the other girl out. She politely excused herself, she couldn't keep talking to him. After leaving she started to cry. For about two hours she cried over him, cursing at her own stupidity for thinking he liked her as more than a friend. One of her friends was nice enough to console her, which she was extremely grateful for, but there was nothing that could repair the damage he had done. Then she realized that this weekend was the one that she was going to see a movie with her friends. HE would be there. She was so anxious....would she manage? Eventually Sunday came along; the actual movie part wasn't that bad, she sat with two of her girl friends and didn't have to talk to him. It wasn't till after the movie that the painful part came. They were the last two to leave and he talked to her and she had to reply...She couldn't very well ignore him now could she? That would be rude. But it still hurt.

It was Monday, though, that the pain reached a level she would never had thought possible. Monday was the day he asked the girl out. It happened at school so she kept her emotions in check for the rest of the day. When she got home though, all hell broke loose inside her. She cried again. Tears came from places she'd thought were already dried up. God it hurt.

She managed to live for the next four days. It hurt, but she survived. The Friday night was her grade nine grad. She had fun dancing with her friends, talking and hanging out outside when they got too hot. When the festivities were almost over, the slow song came on.

It took but one second for the onslaught of emotion to break her barriers. She had thought she would be okay. Boy was she wrong. She'd never felt this may feelings come in one second in her life! She was sad, hopeful, bitter, confused, and angry. She felt stupid, nave, young, inexperienced and disappointed. And all it took was one quick glance. Just one flick of her eyes and she was ready to burst into tears again. The sight of the two of them was all she could bear. She tried thinking of other things, of her friends, and it worked. For five minutes. But she didn't have to see what would happen when she saw them again because six of her friends went to Denny's with her.

A day had already gone by but the pain had still not passed. She didn't think it ever would. He was and always would be her first big crush. He would have a place in her heart for the rest of her mortal life, maybe longer.

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