Tell us about your first crush.
I was born in a small town in Southern Missouri. I remember little about living there, since we moved away when I was two or three years old, but one important thing that I took away from that little town was my first crush. Our mothers were friends and I'd have to check with my mother to find out how they first met, probably church or bowling or something else appropriately 1970's. And though we didn't live there for long, our mothers and our families kept in touch for years afterward. Kris was adorable and sweet, and the few times that he and his family came to visit us in Kansas City, I remember playing and swimming and fighting and one time sneaking a kiss behind our blue plaid sofa. It just seemed right when hanging out with Kris. We clicked.
Even as little six and seven year olds, we had chemistry. He was my friend and I loved him in that pure, possessive way that only kids can. I couldn't remember a time when I wasn't friends with Kris. I was absolutley postive, when I was eight years old, that we would get married and live in a purple house. When his family would come and visit we'd get to have a sleepover, and I vividly remember laying in my white canopy bed just talking and talking until we fell asleep, playing records on my Fisher Price record player, catching lightening bugs with our younger brothers, and one time getting in a fight so nasty at my grandparent's pool that we yelled and screamed and pulled each other's hair and our parents had to separate us.
The visits grew farther and farther apart as we got older, life and miles get in the way, but I always loved my friend. I had the pleasure of spending some time with Kris and his family when I was a freshman in high school and we went back to visit my dad's family. We were different, we were older and hadn't seen each other in ages, but it just felt easy. We watched movies all night and hung out sprawled on the basement floor with our brothers, and it felt like we'd just seen each other a few days before, instead of a few years. There is nothing quite as powerful as those first friendships, when someone else likes you for exactly who you are, when you grow up together, and a sweet boy with a shy smile sneaks a kiss behind the sofa when our moms aren't looking.