It’s the first time she smiles at you, the first time he picks you up for a date, the first time they kiss you, taking your face into their hands and pulling you in. It’s the first time you realize that you can feel this way about another person, that love the way they describe in books, on TV, and in movies is real and it’s amazing. It’s the first time you realize that another person can feel the same way about you as you do them. It’s the first time you let yourself become truly comfortable with someone else, the first time your guard comes down completely and the first time you let someone see who you are in all your entirety. It’s the first time you snort in front of them without turning bright red, the first time you feel unashamed of your body, the first time you let someone truly, completely love you.
It’s the first time you kiss someone while crying harder than you ever have before, harder than you ever knew you could. It’s the first time you realize that it’s not possible to run out of tears. It’s the first time you realize that the person who can make you the happiest is also the person who can bring you the most agony.
First love — it’s the first time you hold the bow, and let someone else pull back the arrow aimed at your chest. First love is trusting them not to let go, trusting them to protect your heart.
First love is never thinking, or expecting, them to let go.
It’s called your first love because it’s also the first time you feel what happens when it’s over. It’s the first time you’ll feel as though a fist ripped through your chest and gripped your heart, pulling it out. It’s the first time you’ll cry so hard over another person, you can’t breathe. It’s the first time you’ll feel completely helpless, like a baby deer that hasn’t quite learned to walk on its own yet. It’s the first time you’ll feel like you’re reaching out to grab something, then realizing it’s smoke, and it disappears between your fingers.
It’s the first time you blame yourself for something that perhaps wasn’t even your fault — maybe it was, but you’ll never know for sure — and it’s also the first time you’re entirely responsible for the way you feel.
It’s the first time you put yourself at fault for loving too much. You blame yourself for throwing yourself completely into the relationship, for letting yourself become absorbed into them, for thinking your first love was going to be your last love. It’s the first time you give more than you have to make another person happy, but at the time it was okay, or so you thought, because their happiness was your happiness and in assuming you’d be together forever, you believed that as long as you kept them happy, you’d be happy. This is the first time you blame yourself for caring too much and, in doing so, losing yourself.
Hearing the words “I don’t love you anymore” for the first time — it hurts, and it hurts bad. Nothing seems to hurt as much as hearing your first love tell you you aren’t theirs anymore.
It’s time to stop living in a fantasy — losing first love is realizing your life is not a young adult novel, no matter how hard you wish it was, and that things won’t work out in the end. You will not end up with them. They’re not sitting in their room every night, spread out over pictures of you, pining away for you and wrestling with their deep, ever-present love for you that they can’t seem to extinguish. They aren’t confused, they aren’t struggling to keep themselves from calling you or walking down the hall to knock on your door. They don’t care anymore — it’s as simple as that, and the sooner you realize this, the sooner you recognize that first love has come to an end, the sooner you’ll be able to move on and enjoy your life and the wonderful things that are to come they way they’re already doing.
When first love ends, you wonder if you even knew what love even was. You wonder if what you had was real or if you felt that way (or if they felt that way) because that’s what the movies told you to feel. When first love ends, you are left feeling lost and alone, sad and confused, and absolutely hopeless.
First love hurts.
When first love ends, it leaves you second-guessing yourself, your self-worth, who you even are. When first love ends, you realize that there’s now a hole in your heart, an absence, a space, something missing. You acknowledge that you’ll adjust, that your heart will shrink back, even though you don’t feel like it will. But when it does shrink back, it will always be a little loose where your first love used to be. There will be scars, and they won’t go away.
When first love ends, you feel like you’re drowning, desperately gasping for air, reaching for help, but the hand you’ve trusted for so long is the one pressing you down, keeping you under.
But first love is not only love. It’s not the best love, or the last love. First love is first, and it’s wonderful and amazing and new, but first is not synonymous with forever. And first is definitely not connected, whatsoever, to final. It’s called your first love because it’s just that — your first. Not your last.