FIRST LOVE’S LOSS • by Jeri Dube

After a day of back-to-back meetings, all I wanted to do was sleep, but it had been a week since I last checked email. And my schedule wasn’t lightening up. It would be the weekend before I’d have time again. I scanned through the junk mail, looking for a note from my daughter, who I hadn’t heard from in four days, when she left for spring semester.

I was skimming over the Facebook notifications when I noticed a “friend request”. It surprised me because I thought I was already in touch with anyone who was anything to me.

But I had forgotten about Jeff Goldstein. The boy who had everything — good looks, good grades, a good family. The one I thought was the one. The Romeo who took me to the Beth Israel parking lot late one Saturday night. The sweet talker who told me he loved me too as he helped me wriggle out of my jeans and panties in the backseat of his grandfather’s Ford Satellite. The bastard who broke up with me three weeks and six days later. He couldn’t even make it a month!

Seeing his name jolted me awake and took me back to that time. I felt the butterflies from when I’d see him in the hall. The longing from just staring at the back of his head in Mr. Sach’s trig class. The jealousy from watching him put his arm around Stacey Schott. It took me until my sophomore year in college to completely get over him.

I started to see if Ron was still awake to tell him, but decided to keep it to myself for a bit. Just long enough to click on Jeff’s name and check out his page. Even though my husband never met Jeff, he’s heard my stories. The last thing he’d feel is threatened. He’d just be annoyed if I interrupted his sleep.

I laughed out loud when I saw Jeff’s profile picture. Of course he was wearing his Princeton sweatshirt.

Damn, he was even better looking now. He had filled out some, but no excess weight. A little graying of the sideburns, but he still had his thick brown hair. And those gorgeous blue eyes.

Looking through one of Jeff’s most recent picture albums revealed that he spent the summer in Scandinavia and then came back to launch his new venture capital firm.

He always told me how he wanted to have enough money and freedom to travel for months at a time.

Then I noticed his relationship status. Divorced! Thank God. Not that I was surprised. The man who had everything didn’t really have anything.

I changed my profile picture to the one of Ron and me in Siena. I updated my status, reporting that Laurie was back at Stanford after a great week in Aspen with us during winter break. Then I accepted Jeff’s friend request.

Jeri Dube, who lives with her husband and son in Western New York, has never been to Aspen. She spends more of her time practicing and performing improv than writing, but once in a while she puts pen to paper and comes up with something worth sharing. Recently, several of her comedy sketches were performed. Jeri also hikes with her husband and dogs, cooks and during the season watches football, perennially hoping the Buffalo Bills will finally make it to the post-season.

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