It was a summer day in Colorado, hot and dry. The air was sweet with pine and dirt, the kind of scent that would remind you of your favorite camping trip. I had been restless all day, knowing what would eventually unfold later that afternoon. A friendship would be lost and the greatest love story of my life to date would end.
Spencer and I first laid eyes on one another in high school. We were in the same gym class, of all the awkward places you can meet at that age. The year was 2002, and I was fourteen and he was sixteen. Spencer recalls that I was really bad at volleyball (a completely true fact about me) and that I would spin around on my heel every time I missed a serve, which he just thought was the cutest thing.
Another year went by before we officially met. I was about to turn sixteen and was lounging around at home on a Friday night (no dating, remember?) when my best friend Ali called.
“Alright, alright,” I conceded. And we all went back home.
Even at such a young age, we were so free with our words of love and admiration for each other. We wrote each other letters and poems weekly, sometimes daily. For a young writer like myself, it seemed this boy couldn’t get any better. He wasn’t just cute and funny, but smart and creative, too. His words were sometimes dark and twisty, but always carried with them a sense of intention that I hadn’t known in any other boys.
This world has a way of getting us down. How it does I’m not sure, but even if I knew, I don’t think I would be able to prevent it. Nevertheless, all we can ever do is endure it, and live our lives for all their worth. We must do everything we can to treasure the happy moments and learn from the difficult ones. And when these seemingly dark times befall us, when the world seems to gang up on me, it hurts at first, but never has my resolve been broken, never has yours. We carry within us a spirit that will never give up, so each new task that befalls us will ultimately be conquered, whether we do it sobbing and moaning, or in fits of hysterical rage, as if our very last ounce of strength is being sacrificed, to finish a last duty. And what then, the sun will set, rise and the world, the universe will drag you forward... -Spencer / December 2003
Prom was amazing, I wrote in my journal the next day. I felt so beautiful, and Spencer was so handsome. We had a blast dancing. It was the most fun I’ve ever had.
Trying to stay friends: (top) Me, Spencer and Haley on Thanksgiving 2004
(left) Spencer and I at my high school graduation 2006 / (right) Me in Aspen, fall 2004
After time had gone on, I realized that the passion we shared in our young love was nothing but a few good memories, tainted by insecurities and a lack of trust. It was time we both moved on. I had spent my senior year single and with amazing friends that helped me recover from breakups and my first bouts with anxiety. I learned more about myself and found a new direction. I was moving to Boston, and was ready for the adventure. Spencer and I were over, despite our opportunities to rekindle our relationship that summer before I went to college. We had such a strong bond, and so I decided that the only way I could muster up the courage to end it all was to grab onto anger and not let go.