My First Love – Natsuyuki Rendezvous Episode 7

Sometimes I still think about her. I can’t help it when the thought crosses my mind. I can’t help but think first loves as little demons that go flitting about minding their own business for a bit. When they get bored they poke and prod from the inside of your heart with their pointy little tridents. It might not hurt or bleed, but they sure are bothersome.

A few weeks ago I discussed six steps that Rokka should take to get over her husband and how far along she had come. In retrospect I realize that following them does help expedite the healing process unless its our first love. First love scars crust over. You can feel them underneath your fingers. For Rokka, the wounds run deep. Sure she had sex with Hazuki (well at least the person she thought was Hazuki) but it doesn’t erase away the past.

The delicate flower arrangements sitting like a crown on the floor, pull her back to her fairytale relationship with Shimao. I can’t blame her for feeling that way. The scene at the end, just as it was a catharsis for Rokka, was one for me as well. The past can’t be undone even if you push forward. Those bits and pieces make up a puzzle who you are. Without them, you aren’t complete.

But another realization sank into me. For most of the series I haven’t been identifying with Hazuki, but Rokka. She was the lens through which I interpreted this series. As I conjoined my own experiences to drama on screen, she was my benchmark for interpreting my own reactions. The fact is I’m still not over my first love.

Sure I’ve had a few positive relationships since that time and another long term one. To those girls that I said ‘I love you’ to, I really did mean it. They weren’t a substitute for, ‘I know this might sound sort of rough, but I love you in a second class citizen sort of way. There’s this really awesome and amazing girl that I truly love, sorry but you’re getting hand-me-down emotions. Just be happy with what you have!’.

When I say I’m not over it I mean to say it provides the context in which I frame my other relationships. Inevitably I compare my late night soiree’s to my first rendezvous. While Rokka’s emotions might be more involved than mine, she similarly compares Hazuki to Shimao. Even the little things are considered. Hazuki refuses to enter a haunted house on his date with Rokka, where she immediately compares its to Shimao’s reluctancy.

Minute similarities become the focal point of our analysis of the person.The thought process seems completely natural, but in retrospect abnormal.  There was definitely something wrong with with our first loves that made them our first and not our last. In the converse scenario, when we look to highlight contrasts, a different person doesn’t necessarily mean a perfect match.

Optimally we want to look at people with an open mind and a blank slate. As the dates roll by, they fill in a venn diagram on the white board of things we like, like some of the time, and dislike. ‘In an ideal world’ as they say.

My first love came during an eight grade summer. We spent whiling away our days at the beach. I don’t know what I liked about her. Maybe she made me feel free, like I could do anything under the sun. What I remember most though is the way she put on sunglasses, with a flick of her wrist.

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