Most of us remember when our lives were forever changed, the day that our hormonal chemistry changed and we stepped into the world of puberty. For some of us, this was an exciting time filled with new desires and misadventures. But for others, this was a difficult and stressful time while trying to discover their self and psychical awareness. The one thing that we all had in common was the inability to control our sexual attraction. This attraction may not have fit into the social norms, but these social dating standards were meant to be changed and I am proud to have taken part in the revolutions.
To fully appreciate this story of love and heartbreak, you must climb into my Hot Tub Time Machine and proceed to the year of 1993. During this year Snoop Dog released, “Nuthin’ But a G Thang “with Dr. Dre and the original premier debut of Jurassic Park swept across movie screens. This year was no different than any other year, but to me at the age of 17 times stood still.
If I knew then what I know now, I would have just sat back and enjoyed every moment of that era. Instead, I had only one thing on my mind and that was girls. Most if not all adolescent’s boys have this weakness, but some can surely control it better than others.
This sordid tale of heartbreak and despair took place in the suburbs of Baltimore in the state of Maryland. I grew up in a middle class family and never was left needing for anything. My mother was an elementary school teacher and my father was a successful auto mechanic who later taught at a trade school. My high school was typical, actually the best in the county at the time even though I didn’t appreciate this fact due to self-indulgence. The school was primarily white which led to a problem, we were black or should I say African American to remain political correct.
My best friend from early childhood was white, while the rest of my friends and associates were as racially diverse as you could imagine. I didn’t see black or white, I just saw people. The Jewish population was extremely high, but I didn’t even become aware of this fact until my mid-twenties when a co-worker made an anti-Semitic joke about the area. I just saw people for people and the innocence of youth is bliss.
My parents never really approved of interracial dating and were always displeased with my attraction to a different race. But as I stated earlier, some things aren’t controllable in life and this is one of them. I made multiple attempts to date young white girls throughout middle school and high school, but for the most part it was unsuccessful. It wasn’t due to my looks, but more so due to bad timing. If I had been born just a measly 10 years later, my entire dating experience in high school would have been different. But nonetheless, I found the love of my life even if it only lasted two weeks.
It all started with a little letter folded into a square that was addressed to me from Sarah. She was a beautiful girl that stood about 5’4 tall with strawberry blonde hair. Her braces made her appearance ever so more seductive, but I knew even then that braces weren’t supposed to be attractive. I had noticed her many times in the past, but figured that she was out of my league and I decided to save myself from rejection. What a mistake that was, I could have found love sooner if I only had more courage.
All it took was one letter and I found myself thrust into my first interracial relationship. I loved the late phone calls into night and writing of letters back and forth. All I could think about was Sarah and I must admit the feeling of puppy love is the best feeling of all. You can’t imagine life without that person even though deep down you realize it isn’t a realistic emotion.
Our relationship blossomed as we held hands walking down the hallways and moments of embrace with empty blank stares from some. It was my turn to show affection in public and I was determined to do so every chance I got. I would look forward to that romantic but awkward kiss that made me feel like I was flying high in the clouds above. There was only one little problem, her father did not approve. Our relationship was secret from her family and it was a matter of time before my world came crashing down around me.
After dating for about 2 weeks, Sarah walked up to me in school looking quite upset. She informed me that her father instructed her to discontinue the relationship, but we both decided to continue in secret. Unfortunately, this didn’t work. A few days later Sarah’s father decided to confront me at my part time job at McDonald’s.
He wasn’t a big man, but he was a man and I was just a boy in love. He confronted me in the parking lot berating me and voicing his displeasure. He never made a racial statement, but the tone of situation was clear and his hatred was in his eyes. Just when the situation was about to become volatile, a car load of my friends just happened to pull into the parking lot. As they walked over to see what the yelling was all about, the situation was over. Sarah’s father knew he was out numbered and made the wise decision to leave.
Unfortunately, his message was clear and the relationship was over because my first love was a forbidden love . She lost access to the phone at home and was forbidden to associate with me in school. My heart was heavy with despair and for a brief moment in time I couldn’t imagine life without Sarah. But as we all know, life goes on and I eventually found a replacement for the void left in heart by Sarah.