The months following the break-up I was a complete mess. I can’t believe my friends, who I had all but ignored, put up with me for so long. Well, put up with me at all really. Whiny, depressed, sarcastic, cynical, and a bunch of other not so good words as well I’m sure.
I remember the turning point so vividly, almost like it was yesterday. A group of us were in the women’s bathroom at school (go figure, group of girls in a bathroom). I was complaining again, and you know what, I can’t even remember what I was saying. Andrea turns on me, gets right up in my face and tells me:
“Just stop. You aren’t helping yourself and you aren’t the only one with problems.”
Wow. Talk about tough love, but it worked. I would like to tell you, that *SNAP* I was all better, but we all know better. After all, it was my first broken heart. I am happy to tell you that even though we almost never get to talk anymore Jon and I are still friends. Real friends, because in the end that is what our relationship really was. I didn’t love him like I thought I did. I loved him like a friend; not like my soul mate. Unfortunately when you are 15, it’s near impossible to know the difference.
During this time, I quickly became tired of explaining to people that Jon and I were no longer together and having to listen to them say “Awwwww, that’s too bad. You guys were so cute together.” Amazingly that is not what someone who just went through a break-up wants to hear. Weird, I know. Especially since I ended up all but comforting other people. “No, really, it’s okay. Everything will work out for the better in the end.” Because of this, I ended up quitting the youth group that Jon and I had gone to for almost 2 years. It was a hard decision because I enjoyed the group, but some things were just too hard.
However, after the incident in the bathroom a fog was lifted and I began to see more of what was going on around me and less of what was going on within me. Turns out Andrea‘s church had a very active youth group, in town, and my whole group of friends had been participating without me even noticing. I’m positive I had been invited, I’m also positive that I was too involved in my pain to remember.
So I went one Wednesday, and fell in love. The group was so alive, so dynamic and was the best medicine I could have ever asked for. They were a very expressive group with a ‘ring leader’ at their core. He was the Pastor’s son, Joshua and he was the most expressive person I had ever met. He sang, he painted, he played guitar, and he was a self-proclaimed actor in training. (Remember, I was 16 at this point, look at this through the eyes of a 16 year old and it makes more sense!)
Obviously, I was smitten and soon we were in a relationship. It was nothing like my relationship with Jon. It was tumultuous, dramatic, and the only constant was change. We were off and on for an entire year. It was the worst year of my entire high school career. Our relationship was so dramatic and so volatile that I found myself using Andrea (because she had introduced us) as a shoulder to cry on. The brand new friendship that I had just developed with her was ruined, not just because I had regressed back to only focusing on me but because unbeknownst to me she had been ‘in love’ with Josh for over 2 years.
Eventually I had enough, and when we broke up for what felt like the thousandth time I said no more. I didn’t want to deal with the grief anymore. Unfortunately, my friendship with Andrea was beyond repair this time and we would never really get past this.
Despite all of the things I put up with Josh, he did introduce me to Theatre and Drama club. At first I had joined simply to spend more time with him and my new group of friends I had gained by being his girlfriend. But, I quickly fell in love and acting became a much needed release for me. Something I deeply miss in my life even to this day and something that played a major role in leading me to the first time I would meet Bran.
To be continued…