Another July 25th has come and gone. It was the day that Boris and I used to call our dating anniversary. We weren’t really sure when our actual anniversary was, but I knew it was around this time. We were two 17-year-old kids making out at Tybee Beach and staying out past my curfew. I remember how he asked me to be his girlfriend, and I remember the butterflies I felt when I got home that night. It felt like a high, and I had never felt that way before. I remember looking in the mirror and thinking, “Wow, something has changed”. I thought I looked different, or something. I definitely felt different. He was so funny and charming and made me feel so special. We argued and disagreed about so much, even back then, but I could not deny the magnetic draw I had for him. I wanted to be around him all the time, but I was comfortable when we were apart. I wanted to talk to him about everything and share everything with him. I hadn’t had a boyfriend before or even kissed someone else, so my love story with Boris is also the story of my first everything. After several years, he sort of brushed off July 25th and we didn’t really celebrate it anymore. But, I always remembered it and we always talked about it, remembering those early years of butterflies and young romance.
Considering we were only 27 when he died, our romance was still so young. We were still just kids. I will forever treasure the love we shared, and the love I still have for him. Every July 25th I will think of him and kissing at the beach. I will remember going to Arby’s drive-through and riding in his Honda Accord. I will remember the Secondhand Serenade song that was playing, and how I felt my heart racing in the dark on the drive home. I am so lucky that my first love lasted so long, and that it was with someone I wanted to spend forever with. I am so sad that it was cut short, and I wish we could have one day had a wedding anniversary to celebrate, or an anniversary of our first home together. Love is beautiful, but so cruel, as we all know too well.