Autumn Foreshadows the Short, Dark Days of Winter

The classes for my very first semester of college had been set. Instead of five days a week like high school, I was going to attend classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays, from 8 in the morning until 12 (English, math and biology), then from 2 to 3 (one class — biology lab) on both respective days. On both days, I also had night class at a high school about 25 miles away, which would last from 6 till 9 in the evening (sociology and psychology).

It seemed like a great schedule at the time. Sure, Bekki and I weren’t going to have our usual chats at 7 in the evening on those two days, but I felt like a rockstar when I thought about the prospect of having a four day weekend.

My first day of classes on Tuesday, August 24, 2009 came and went by. So far, so good. I knew a couple of people in some of my classes from high school. That was nice. We sat together. Even though we weren’t close friends back in high school, it was nice to see familiar faces, so we stuck together. My biology class was in a little auditorium. I didn’t mind it, and actually liked it at the time.

Speaking of not minding something, I didn’t mind my night classes, or at least driving to them. It was a fun ride. At the time I was driving a 1991 Suzuki sidekick with no air conditioning. It was my grandmother’s vehicle, but she allowed me to drive it. In hindsight, looking back from this juncture as I now drive a 2012 Nissan Versa, I appreciated the Suzuki sidekick. Not only did I not have air conditioning, but I also didn’t have cupholders. I can’t express how much I love and appreciate my Nissan Versa for having both. A lot of people would think, “A Versa? Meh,” but I love this car. Anyhow, I digress. Back to 2009.

Not only was the high school I was taking night classes at have a Sonic drive-in near, but there were quite a few fast food restaurants to grab some grub at after class. I was stoked. Bekki was proud of me. I was happy. There was literally nothing to worry about at the time. My levels of confidence and my self-esteem were an an all-time high. I knew I could do whatever I had my aim on. My amazing girlfriend would always be there for me and support me through the best and tough times… right?

If you read in my last post, you would know that as of August 2009, Bekki was 15 and I was 17 going on 18 in a month. She was a virgin before she met me, but I wasn’t. I lost my virginity back in November 2006 and had another relationship after that before meeting Bekki in June/July 2008. After a year of being with Bekki, this had never bothered her, or at least she never mentioned one word about it up to that point.

Until she did.

2Out of the blue, one day, Bekki mentioned secretly harboring jealous feelings over my past. She said she felt like girl number three instead of my “one and only”. Despite the fact that Bekki was undoubtedly the love of my life, she was jealous over the fact that I’d been with two girls before her. At the time I didn’t register this as a lack of maturity on her part. I saw this as a mistake on my behalf, and instead of letting this be a little thing that should have passed by easily and not become an issue, I apologized for my past. Another huge mistake that would cost me dearly in our relationship in the long run.

Bekki quietly mentioning her jealous feelings over my past started to become a bigger issue, a molehill into a mountain kind of deal. Out of all the things to plague a relationship, this was going to be it. The one thing that was going to be the downfall of an amazing relationship featuring two people with perfect, outstanding chemistry with one another.

At this point, you — the reader — are likely thinking, “[Smutler], you got together when you were 16 and she was 14. Did you really expect full-blown maturity from a 14-15 year old girl? Especially when you are her first real boyfriend and lover?”

I did. I did expect it. For a year she was the greatest girlfriend in the world, more mature than most adults I knew. She was an avid reader, writer, artist, painter, incredible speaker and cook, and as mature as anyone I’d ever met. But things changed. Maybe this was a growing pain.

I acted like a veritable beta male. I apologized over my past. I even cried. Looking back, what a shame. I was desperate and scared to death of losing her. Instead of giving her the ultimatum of getting over the trivial minutiae of my past from a time period at which she nor I even knew each other or just breaking up with me, I apologized for my past, cried to her, begged her to stop getting mad and totally disrespected myself. I had never ‘acted’ needy or clingy before up to this point.

October rolled around. Things seemed to be getting better than what they were, but they only became worse. I was constantly riddled with anxiety, nervous before every conversation with her, scared that she’d go off about my past again and flaunt her jealousy. Man, what a huge bitch-boy I was. How could she respect me, at that point? With the way I was acting? I wasn’t standing my ground or respecting myself.

As for my college classes, I couldn’t concentrate.I stopped going to biology and my biology lab, stopped going to math and, while I lied to my family and friends about going to night classes, I would drive out to the town where the high school I was attending night classes was located and I’d just go inside one of the restaurants there and have a meal, while constantly thinking about Bekki and worrying about how the next conversation would go. The only class I was attending by October 2009 was English.

“Where did things go wrong?” I kept asking myself. I would constantly worry about how to make Bekki happy, how to right the ship with our relationship. Instead of figuring out how to make myself happy, I didn’t know what to do. I just wanted her to stop going off on me over my past and for our relationship to go back to being what it was before all of this began happening.

Sadly, things got worse.

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