While I was home for Christmas, I came across some small wallet photos of friends from Junior High in my room. It made me think of my Junior High crush, Ned, and the quiet obsession we all had with boys at that age. I’m not really sure where the natural obsession with boys comes from, of course, there's hormones and such, but why were we girls always searching for Prince Charming? What’s so interesting is that the girls at that age are obsessed with boys and the boys that age are obsessed with everything else but girls. Come to think of it, guys are basically like that until they hit their thirties.
I think my first Junior High crush was Ned*. He was so handsome and had big beautiful blue eyes. When school pictures came out, everyone would trade with their friends and gather a big stack of little wallet photos. The person that had the most was the coolest because obviously, they had more friends. I remember I was able to trade photos with Ned and I carried that photo around all weekend, just looking into those eyes and begging God to make him ask me to be his girlfriend.
God didn’t think that was a good idea, but he hooked my best friend up with Ned. That was pure torture until I found out the only reason he liked her was because she let him feel her boobs.
Junior high school dances were always so awkward and exciting at the same time. My mom would take me to the local department store and buy me a new outfit. I’d get all prettied up, just hoping that this one night would be the night that a boy would actually ask me to dance. Of course, in Junior High, the boys danced in one circle and the girls in another. The steady couples would sneak in the back corners, behind all the piled up chairs in the cafeteria and would make out. Occasionally someone would randomly kiss and we’d all giggle and gossip about it all night long, secretly wishing that it was us.
I sealed my destiny and entire junior high and high school reputation one chilly night in October of seventh grade. It was my first real party and I had been going with a boy named Chris*. We had even exchanged Swatch watches.
He sent one of his friends to have me meet him in the bushes to make out. I immediately said no. I had an older sister and knew that nothing happened in her life without my mother finding out. I wasn’t about to go and get pregnant and felt up at the first party of my teenage life.
Five minutes later, that same friend arrived back with my Swatch and said that Chris wanted his back - that he was breaking up with me.
I remember Def Leppard playing in the background – I think it was “Love Bites”. I continued playing pool with my girlfriends and wasn’t really heartbroken over my two-week relationship. But little do I know that word traveled. I wasn’t able to get a guy to even look at me for the next three years.
*Names have been changed to protect the innocent, and myself of course