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What I remember most about him were the sweet murmurs of love he would whisper in my ear while we sat and held hands in the park. Also, the way his eyes changed colors with the passing of the seasons. He told me they changed for me, to reflect how his love was growing inside of him with the passage of time.

Sweet Rafael. He was my first love, my first heartache, my first everything. He was older and more mature, while I was still a kid in school. All this happened at the tender age of 16, when I should have been focused on more important things than romance and men. But you can't tell a teenager anything.

We met through my younger cousin, who met him in reform school. My cousin gave him my address to write to and, of course, being young and silly, I wrote back. It was more of a jailhouse-rock pen-pal type of love from the beginning. When he got out, we met and began dating, moving our relationship forward faster than it should've gone. Our relationship had its ups and downs, but I thought our requited love would make it all work out in the end. We were going to get married, have children, and grow old together.

But was I wrong. I should've known nothing good could come out of dating a man I met while he was in "kiddie jail." One day after school I saw him in the usual spot, waiting for me. Or so I thought. When I walked up to him with a smile on my face, he looked at me with annoyance. He was waiting for a friend and had other things to do, so he said. This struck me as weird, so I said, "Okay," and walked away.

But, unbeknownst to him, I waited around the corner to see what he was up to. And then he came, with another girl at his side. I was shocked! Where did our love go? I jumped from behind the wall where I was hiding and approached him with fire in my eyes. "Who is this? What are you doing with her?" I shouted at the top of my lungs.

This is where it got ugly, and my heart was broken beyond repair. He looked at me and turned to the new girl and said he didn't even know me. He told her to my face that I was lying and was only a minor associate that he had never dated but was truly obsessed with him. The tears started to flow from my eyes, the curses flew from my mouth, but nothing would budge him from saying that he did not know me.

Finally, I composed myself and walked away, after one final curse, never to see or hear from my first love again. My heart lay broken in a million pieces from this breakup, so long ago, but now I look back and laugh at it. Oh, well. We live and learn, correct?

Tell us the story of your breakup and/or date from hell and we will publish it and pay you ($100 for 500-2000 words).

E-mail story to
dumped@sdreader.com
Or mail to:
San Diego Reader/Dumped
Box 85803
San Diego, CA 92186

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