Archived: The Boy Who Taught Me to Love Myself by Victoria Hughes

I will never forget the way my heart raced on that August evening, when that very attractive boy said hi for the first time. I wish I could go back to my freshman year and warn myself that his arms are big, and he is tall, and he has a very attractive face, and I know I get lost in his eyes, but none of that matters. None of that could ever make up for his personality.

I was new, and luckily I had a friend, Rosemary. It was about 7:30 pm and all of the returning FFA members had just told us all of these fun stories. We were now in the Ag shop, eating snacks and talking to the members.

Rosemary seemed more enthusiastic about the members than she did the club itself. “There’s so many cute boys! I knew there would be. Aren’t you glad you came?”

“Uhh… yeah! I am.”

It was only my freshman year, and I was shy around everyone especially boys. That’s why when John ran up to us and grabbed Rosemary’s arm, my heart began to pound in my chest.

“She’s new. I thought I would make her go for it. I’m John by the way, I’m a senior. Did you have a game or something?” He eyed my softball uniform covered in dirt like he had never seen such object.

“I’m Tori, and I’m a freshman. Oh and yeah we did. That’s where I got the dirt from.” Really Tori? That’s the best thing you could think of?

“Well I would love to get to know you better! What’s your number?”

After the meeting, I said my goodbyes and John asked if I needed a ride home. Unfortunately, my mother was already in the parking lot waiting for me, so I had to decline his amazing offer. We were up all night texting, and it was the start of something amazing. Or so I thought.

In health class, I updated Rosemary on our conversations through the night. I walked through the halls all day thinking of him, and blushing when we passed each other in the hall. He always gave a very nice smile, but had never stopped to talk to me until now.

“Are you coming to the meeting tonight?”

“Maybe…I’m not sure if I want to join yet. I don’t really know if it’s my thing.”

“I would love to give you a ride home if you come. Just be sure to let your mom know you already have a ride.”

“I’ll think about it. I’ll text you!”

There was no thinking about it. Once he offered me a ride, I was going to that meeting. I spent the rest of my day looking forward to that night. Not exactly the meeting itself, but definitely the ride home. He was just always on my mind, and to look back at it now I am sickened by it. I should have known trying to get involved with a senior was not the best of my options.

I suffered through the entire meeting, and the only thing that kept me there was John. John with the gorgeous blue eyes, and John who was giving me a ride home.

I suffered through the entire meeting, and the only thing that kept me there was John. John with the gorgeous blue eyes, and John who was giving me a ride home. I gave him directions as we drove to my house, telling stories about our day. When we got to my house, we both got out of the car and he walked me to the door. I thanked him for the ride, and he pulled me in for a hug. I could feel my heart about to break through my ribcage and rip through my skin, and I’m sure he could feel it to. When he leaned out, I expecting him to walk back to his truck. Instead, he leaned in closer and gave me the most delicate kiss.

“I’m glad you decided to come.”

“I’m glad I did.”

That entire night, I was up thinking about him. This was the first ride he gave me, and definitely not the last. We had a lot more similar times, some of them involving more than a quick kiss on the lips. We didn’t have sex, and I’m thankful I was smarter than that.  Every week after FFA, we would go out to his truck and head to my house. Sometimes after football or volleyball games, he would offer a ride home but he never asked if I wanted to sit by him.

I spent the rest of my freshman year going to his football games, getting rides home from the FFA meetings, and falling hopelessly in love with an unlovable person. I told him everything, I gave him everything, and he was always my top priority. He swore to me that we were in a relationship, and I was his girlfriend. I was the ‘girlfriend’ that had never met his parents, or never been to his house. I was the ‘girlfriend’ that was never taken out on a date. I was the ‘girlfriend’ that he never hugged in the halls, and never kissed in public. I was the ‘girlfriend’ that was nothing more than just something on the side.

So here I am, three years later. I’m not broken, anymore. I can finally trust someone of the male gender, finally, and I am so much stronger and smarter than the clueless freshman who walked into that Ag shop on that August evening. He may have taken everything from me, and made me feel like nothing, but that pushed me to be something. It was my first heartbreak, and by far the worst. I’m at a point now where I am proud of his accomplishments, and don’t feel like crying when he crosses my mind. If I hated him and didn’t respect him as a person, then we would be one and the same.



This was a creative nonfiction describing part of my freshman year, and my first heartbreak. Almost all of this is true, but there are a few twists here and there. This is a creative nonfiction piece, but more specifically it is a personal essay.