Do You Remember Your Innocence?

We all had a time when we weren’t spoiled by the tensions, greeds, and taboos of society. There was actually a time, in all probability, that each of us loved unconditionally. This is a reflection on what they used to call puppy love. They said we couldn’t know what real love was, but puppy love was as real to me as any feeling I’ve had in my life.

I can still remember when I was six years old and fell deeply in love with five year old Marianne. For the purposes of this narrative which I am about to put forth I will limit myself to using first names. Whereas those of whom I speak may know that I’m referring to them, nobody will be offended or embarrassed by having their name in such a detailed account of some possibly uncomfortable situations.

Back to my first love. Once again you must remember I was only six years old and in my innocence I saw only a person I wanted to be very close to. We spent most of our time together and I felt so strongly toward her that whenever we were close I could feel my chest pounding inside. Many years later I was to find out that it was my heart that was pounding, and to this day I still have strong feelings for Marianne.

Did I hear someone say puppy love isn’t real. Then why, when I think about her, does it still hurt even though it’s almost sixty years later. Why do I still carry a soft spot in my heart for this cute little girl even though our parents thought we were headed for disaster. So the first girl that actually showed me the difference between a girl and a boy (we played hospital and took turns as doctors examining each other.) said she couldn’t see me any more, and I was heartbroken.

Do you still think it wasn’t love. I disagree. I still love her in a distant sort of way. I still would like to know that she’s doing well and is happy.

Moving on to my early school years. There was a girl named Eileen. We were in every class together almost all through school. All classes in elementary school, and home room in high school was shared by both of us. I loved her but never told her. Was I sorry? Not really, because she was happy and I didn’t want to get in the way of that. Does that make sense?

In the mean time when I was in junior high school, called middle school in some places, I happen do see a girl named Doris that I was smitten by. So smitten that whenever she was around I found I could hardly speak. Again, since I was still a shy individual, I never really told her how deeply in love I was. Was it real? If it wasn’t why does it still hurt today?

Then there was Linda. I met her in the park when I went bicycle riding. We would sit, talk, sometimes kiss, and hold hands. Because I had bees so shy to this point I was still a little shaky about what to say to a girl and how to act. I know I made a fool of myself a few times, and was angry with myself when she finally said she found someone else. I knew it had to be my fault. I was fifteen. Was it real? It still hurts today. If that’s not real I don’t know what is.

There were others as I was getting older. Some of them I decided were not quite right for long term, and others decided for me. Each of them, no matter how short term, still have a place in my heart. I never had a relationship with a girl, or a woman, that I didn’t have deep feelings for. I call those feelings love. You can call them whatever you want. They weren’t lust because I didn’t need to be “sexual” with them. I just wanted to be near them. Every one of them, and there weren’t that many, I truly loved. I will always cherish their memory.

I’m not going to give any more examples, as I feel I’ve given adequate reason for my determination that puppy love is as much real love as any other love. If puppy love were allowed to blossom into its full capability, guarded of course to avoid early problems, I think those puppy loves would be longer lasting than a great deal of the marriages today. My reason is that puppy love is innocent love, while most love today is based on sexuality. If love were based on anything but sexuality I firmly believe it would last forever. After all; my puppy love lasted forever even though I don’t see these people any more.

You be the judge. Can you remember your puppy love. Was it real? Does it still hurt? Are you still in that kind of innocent love?