The love that could not be

Another bad night, after a brief respite the night before. This time I wasn't able to find sleep until at least 5:00 in the morning. It was a struggle not to fall completely, and in the end I had to cry, cry for a love, my first love, that could not be.

I remember the boy, his name. I remember that I called him a lot (in times of landlines, it wasn't possible to do so without my parents or his parents noticing), but I really didn't understand what was happening to me. The emotions, the love, were not able to break my body armour. And I doubt if they would have been able to do so that I would have understood this love, that I would have had the words to name it and express it.

The only thing that came out of my armor was a feeling of the need to meet this boy, or talk on the phone. He was a high school classmate, so we saw each other a lot. I remember that sometimes we stayed in a bar, and sometimes I also stayed later at his house (his parents' house) to sleep, but we never shared a bed, and nothing ever happened. I also remember a holiday at the end of the year with some friends from school, and I think I went more for the sake of him than for anything else...

I had no idea about my sexuality. Homophobic harassment and my body armour prevented me from realising my sexuality and my love. I also had no idea about his sexuality. I don't remember my sexual fantasies during this time, if I imagined that boy when I was masturbating. Years later, when I finally connected with my sexuality, I do remember imagining sex with this boy masturbating.
When I finished high school we lost touch. I went to another city to study - or rather, I escaped from my parents to another city to study - and I returned to my hometown very little.

Last night, I thought about all this, and for the first time I could cry about this love that could not be. I felt the pain, I also felt the fear for what I was feeling then. The anxiety I felt when I tried to call him (as it was a landline, usually his parents answered first). The anxiety when we met, or when we went to his house. And I cried. I let out some of the pain for this love that could not be. There is still more pain, and I feel very sad writing this. It took me years more to fall in love and realise it (there was at least one more occasion when I didn't realise it). It took me years more to break at least some of my body armour to connect with love.