My last memory of our first summer together was our overnight camping trip...
It was the middle of summer. It was July. Strapping, tall, handsome, all-American, all muscle, all adorable, all wonderfully everything I always go for in a guy, hott-ness firefighter and I had been casually dating for about 3 months. Our friendship and affection for one another had grown and started to blossom. I knew when he came into town, that we would spend time with one another. It was inevitable.
We were learning so much about one another and had decided to take our relationship very slowly for a few reasons. First, the obvious one, is that he lived over an hour and a half away. There were times when he couldn’t come to town. I had gotten used to our situation and since it was summer, I had the freedom and the time to find other things to do with my friends. Secondly, he was a year younger than me and sometimes his actions showed it. Girls, especially me, are sometimes more mature for their age, and guys, especially him, are sometimes a little immature for their age. But, we still fancied one another and enjoyed each others company regardless of this maturity issue. Thirdly, I learned why his immaturity in our relationship even existed.
Strapping, tall, handsome, all-American, all muscle, all adorable, all wonderfully everything I always go for in a guy, hott-ness firefighter had his heart broken prior to me. (Haven’t we all?) But, he was very sensitive to the issue. He had been with his first and last girlfriend throughout high school and most of his post high school experience. She was the only girlfriend he had ever had. He was planning on marrying her until she broke his heart. So, I tried to be understanding and respectful to his hesitation. And because of his hesitation, I was hesitant too. It was a circle of hesitation and infatuation all in one. But, we understood it and accepted. Neither of us was in a hurry to put a title to us.
In mid July, Strapping, tall, handsome, all-American, all muscle, all adorable, all wonderfully everything I always go for in a guy, hott-ness firefighter was planning on coming to town for the weekend. This happened to be the same weekend of my roommate’s birthday. It was also the weekend before my birthday. My roomie’s parents and I had planned on surprising the birthday girl with a small lake party since her parents had a boat. Her family regularly went to the lake and camped out…especially since it was summertime. And strapping, tall, handsome, all-American, all muscle, all adorable, all wonderfully everything I always go for in a guy, hott-ness firefighter agreed to help me and accompany me to the party.
He and I drove out to the lake together. Of course, he had all his own camping equipment and of course, I didn’t even have a sleeping bag; and of course, we planned on sharing all his equipment. He was so helpful in helping set up the party and helping my roomie’s parents with whatever they needed. I learned how to set up a tent too….or at least, I learned how to watch him set it up and pretend to try to be helpful with it.
We went out on the boat and it was the first time I had seen him without his shirt on, and let me tell you, ladies…firefighters are hot. He is Strapping, tall, handsome, all-American, all muscle, all adorable, all wonderfully everything I always go for in a guy, hott-ness firefighter for a reason. A good reason. My insecurity level and feelings of inadequacy definitely skyrocketed in the gorgeous body department. But, I didn’t let it show. I just kept on keeping on with our normal ways. We flirted and pretend fought in the water. I held on to him while he swam and then he would pull me around so that we were face to face. He would hold me in the water and give me sweet affectionate kisses. The sun was setting on the water as we floated arm in arm, face to face, with our mutual sweet affection for one another.
The rest of the evening went by quickly with the grilling of hot dogs, and hamburgers and the sweet crackling of marshmallows for our s’mores. We even went for a small drive before we decided to try and call it a night.
As we walked up the hill toward our perfectly pitched tent, it finally dawned on me that we were about to share this tent. We were about to share the sleeping bags and blankets and pillows that awaited us in the perfectly pitched tent. He was going to see me first thing in the morning. I was going to see his beautiful and perfect face and smile first thing in the morning. I was excited and horribly frightened.
There was no reason to be frightened. As we got into the tent, he made sure I was perfectly comfortable first. Then, he laid down next me. We had decided that we wanted to lay with the tent flap open with our heads near the opening so we could lay there together under the stars. As we laid there together, we talked. We confided. We kissed. He held me as we talked. As we confided. As we kissed. As we fell asleep together in the midst of our talking and star gazing. I fell asleep in his arms with my face against his chest.
We woke up early in the morning. Our heads were still placed near the open flap of our tent. My face was still buried in his chest. He was so warm. He still looked just as beautiful in the mornings. I realized how much of a gentleman he really was. I realized how much I really cared about him. I realized how wonderful he was. I realized how great our relationship was. I realized how easy it was to be around him. I realized a lot that morning as we packed up and headed back home. It frightened me.
What if he didn’t feel the same way?
I had to know. Three months and a sweet, romantic, and innocent overnight camping trip later. I had to know where this was going. I had to know if I was going to get hurt like he had been hurt. I had to know. It was finally getting to me. I had to know.
On the car drive home, I wish I hadn’t have needed to know.
To be continued…