Happy Anniversary, Johnny

John was the absolute love of my life. I loved him the very first time I saw him, when I was seventeen and he was twenty-three. I remember it sometimes, can actually recall the pang of surprise, the heart thrumming in my chest when I looked upon this stranger and thought (like in the movies) I’m going to marry that man.

I didn’t marry him, spoiler alert, but I still would if I ever had the chance. If, after five years four years, nine months, and sixteen days I finally saw him again, I would rush into his arms and tell him how sorry I was for the mistake I made, I would tell him I still love him, and will, forever.

Today is his birthday, so it’s a hard day for me. I woke up this morning remembering him, looking into the mirror when I was brushing my teeth and staring at all the gray hairs on my head, grays that weren’t there the last time he saw me. He would hate that I don’t dye my hair. It’s just the way he was, he wanted everything to be beautiful. He made me beautiful.

He was seven years older than me, and he hated his birthday, he hated getting older. The year he turned twenty-five he panicked that he was a quarter century old, and I, at a tender, new nineteen, couldn’t even imagine being his age. So John decided he wouldn’t have birthday’s anymore. From that day forward, every birthday would turn into the anniversary of being nineteen.

Today is his nineteenth anniversary of being nineteen. And I am nowhere near him.

All I want to do is touch him. Be close enough to tell him I love him.

But it’s over, and he’s long gone.

This is such a hard day for me.

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