The dramafest started on the first day of preschool.
I was crying and begging my mom to let me go back home and watch The Simpsons. We maneuvered through the halls and stopped at a small door.
Mom opened the door and I stopped sobbing immediately. The room, although small, was full of joy. There were about twenty other small children. Most of them were still crying, but there were a few who were playing happily with others. Along one wall were stacks and stacks of wooden letter blocks, lined neatly on a shelf. In a corner were pots of finger paint in bold, bright colors. Then I saw the boy.
He was quietly playing by himself, and I liked him immediately. For the rest of the year, I tried hard to impress him. I showed off and spoke loudly. I did less-than-cartwheels and jumped higher than anyone else. It didn't work.
At the end of the year, he "graduated". I was sad, but determined that we would meet again in the future.
At age three, my mom got pregnant with my brother. At age four, he was born. My mom let me pick his name. I named my own brother after my crush. Stupid, right?
At five, I was in kindergarten. I was friends with many people, although there were two groups of people that I was in who fought constantly. One of the cliques (yes, we had cliques in kindergarten) had two people in it (not including me). One of them was snobby as you could get. The other was a talented violinist. The other group consisted of five people (not including people). They were closer friends, although I never fit in. One had a confident aura. One was funny beyond words. One was quiet, but brainy. One was tall. The last one, who would later become my best friend, was bold.
In second grade, I separated from both the groups and moved to another school. So did my soon-to-be-bestie. We became closer and I learned a bit more about her. She apparently knew my crush, but she didn't know him like I did. She didn't see him as a sweet boy with good intentions. She saw him as a hostile bully. My best friend described situations when he had been mean to her. Tripping, pushing, shoving, the lot. I didn't remember that, although, I figured, It had been over five years. I couldn't possibly remember everything.
In the summer after third grade, I saw him. He was hanging out with a few friends at 7-Eleven. He saw me. He called out my name. I ignored him. I was embarrassed and afraid that I would make a fool of myself. Then, in the summer after fourth grade, I saw him in a park again. He called out my name again, and I ignored him again. Thinking back, I wished I had acknowledged him.
Middle school hit hard. I spent some more time on homework and tried harder to please my teachers. Life was fine, but then, about a week in, I saw the boy again.
Now, remember, it was only a month in. It was still decently warm and I rode my bike to school every day. One day, as I was riding back home, I nearly ran over my crush.
I swerved desperately and managed to survive. I didn't touch him, thankfully. But I did get a glimpse of his face. It was as handsome as ever and ridden with surprise. I was half excited that he was attending the same middle school as I was and half scared that after that encounter, he would think I was a total idiot.
I saw him a few more times. In the halls, around the parking lot, etc. But I never got the guts to talk to him. He was always surrounded by friends, and I didn't want to embarrass him by talking to him.
Now, I still haven't talked to him yet. I think he knows I exist. I'm not positive. Wish me luck the next time I get the courage to talk to him.