Monday, May 14, 2018

Judy Blume's Forever: Remembering Firsts

I read somewhere that every girl should read a Judy Blume book as they grow up. She just got it - the things adolescent girls go through - hormones, boys, love and periods. My first encounter with Judy Blume was back in College when I found a book written by her called Summer Sisters though that one was an adult novel. Forever is my first adolescent Judy Blume book. It was one of my book hauls at the Big Bad Wolf Books event.

 

The plot: Katherine and Michael meet at a party. The attraction is instant and pretty soon they're going out - and making out. This is love, and love is forever - right? But love isn't simple - and when Katherine's parents make them spend the summer apart, forever begins to feel like an awfully long time... 

Forever is a classic novel of first love, first sex and first heartbreak. While I am past my teenage years, I still appreciated this book. It's so relatable! It made me look back at my own teenage years, more specifically my first brush with love. 

I met him through text chat. Feature phones like Nokia 3310 were cool back then and there was no Facebook. Some text message exchanges and a few phone calls and we decided to meet. I was initially interested in someone else - his friend but after awhile, I found myself having more frequent phone conversations, text messages and chats on Yahoo Messenger with him and looking forward to them. I found myself falling in love for the first time. 

Michael stopped the car and kissed me again. "You're delicious," he said.  No boy had ever told me that. - This line from the book brought me back to my first kiss. It was inside a movie house with a James Bond film, Die Another Day. He asked if he could kiss me and I nodded. I remember feeling all giddy with excitement and nervousness that I was about to get my first real kiss that day! I didn't know how it would feel like but I so wanted to know if it was as they described it in the books that I've read. I read a lot of Love Stories novels back then!    

And like Katherine in the book, my parents thought I was getting too involved with a guy too soon especially my Dad! So yeah, when they voiced out their disapproval, I rebelled because in my mind back then, I was thinking they just don't want to see me happy in love! Typical teenage angst. Ha! Ha! 

Eventually they got around to accepting that I had a boyfriend. We lasted for four years actually.  I remember buying him cards for our monthsaries, him giving me stuff toys and Silverworks bracelet as gifts and celebrating our anniversary at a "fancy" restaurant - it was more like Chef D' Angelo but when you're students living on allowance, that was as fancy as it could. I remembered loving the feeling of having someone as a constant plus one. We watched a lot of movies on date days back then!  

But as the years went by and he talked about future plans like settling down with me, having kids and building our home, I found that the once intense feelings of love were no longer as strong as before. I started to think what else or who else was out there. So needless to say, we broke up. He found another girl and I remember running home to my Dad that day bawling my eyes out as I told him about our break up. My first heartbreak. I thought it'd take me forever to move on from that heartbreak because during that time, it just hurt so much. 

It's years later now and I can actually just look back at those times and smile and sometimes laugh at myself because I was so naive! I thought that because I loved him and he loved me and we've been together for years, we were supposed to stay together for the rest of our lives. I'd never regret my first love. He taught me a lot about love. 
  
Judy Blume's Forever may have been set in the '70s but it's still as relevant as ever, even now, in the year 2018. It's a wonderful read. It'll make you laugh, reminisce and go "aww" as you travel down memory lane, remembering your own firsts.  

 

  

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