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A tale of three boys

The party of the first part:

ok, let's be honest... I loved him. I can hem & haw all I want about infatuation and long distance and extreme circumstances & fate - but I loved him. I loved him from almost the first moment - which is ridiculous, because I don't do that. Maybe it was the way he looked at me, maybe it was the knight in shining armor bit, maybe it was the pink fuzzy handcuffs... ok it probably wasn't the handcuffs - I don't even technically remember those. Whatever it was, it was immediate, it was electric, and I was giddy and smiling from day one. The way he looked at me, the way he spoke to me, the way he touched me... I have never felt more beautiful or alive than I did when I was with him. I didn't care where things were going, I didn't care that he was so far away, all I knew was that I wanted to be with him whenever I could for as long as I could. And then the world came crashing down, and I don't think he ever looked at me the same way again. Not that I can fault him, he was good to me. He was patient and kind and almost loving... almost. At the very least, part of him wanted to be there for me. Some noble, gracious part of him... but he didn't love me anymore, and honestly? maybe he never did. Maybe it was infatuation, maybe he was scared, maybe I didn't turn out to be the girl he imagined me to be, maybe an intensity like that can't last, maybe it was never meant to... I don't know. In any case, I was too proud to be his good deed, and I was too weak to fight him, so I summoned whatever strength I had left and said goodbye. In the end I'm not even sure he was the one who broke my heart, I probably did that myself.

The party of the second part:

He made me smile. You're thinking, "that sounds easy, she's a smiley kind of girl", but trust me – at that point in time, it was an all too arduous task. I thought the numbness would last forever, but it didn't. I thought I could never trust myself again, but I found I could at least try. He made me feel less alone, less like I was floating away on my own iceberg. I could talk to him for hours about anything and everything. And I knew he was an amateur at best, but that was alright, maybe even better, safer at least. We were silly and awkward and smiling, and I think we liked each other a whole lot. In some ways, it was like joint therapy – only he was so focused on his own healing, I don’t think he ever really noticed that I was in emotional rehab too. He was easy - in that pull on your favorite jeans kind of way. He felt good, maybe even reliable... and then he was gone. I was surprised, but not shocked. My ego smarted, but the rest of me carried on without much ado. Still, he's a good boy, and when I see him, I can't help but smile.

The party of the third part:

I met him while I was with the party of the first part, so he was pretty much doomed to begin with. When he met me I was in love, at ease, and wearing a dress that bordered on scandalous. He was sweet, charming, and rather dashing in his tux, but at the end of the evening I absconded with my Prince, and honestly never looked back. When he re-surfaced some months after the party of the second part, I thought he might be just what I needed. Smitten, stable, quirky… maybe too quirky? I think essentially, we existed on different planes. He would attempt to be witty and charming, and I would see him as peculiar and churlish. And I was mean. I am almost never mean, and I was completely bitchy and obnoxious around him. Perhaps part of it was that every time I thought of him, I was immediately reminded of the party of the first part, and how woefully different this prospective relationship was from the whirlwind that was. I couldn't seem to give him an honest shot at making me happy and I don't know why.