astudyof contrast

a blog by ryan tauch

A First Grade Love Story

It was on the playground that I remember her the most, in first grade, to be specific. We were on that jungle gym dome made of triangles. I remember at recess we held hands as we ran and then climbed to the top. There she whispered in my ear and told me something I'll never forget, "I like you" she said. The other kids soon started to gather around. One of my classmates climbing up saw this and asked what she whispered. She promptly told him, "It's a secret". This was our little secret.

She was a child model so she would miss class often due to whatever work she booked. Whenever she was in class and we could get together and play, we would. Blocks, puzzles, numbers--you name it. There's not much you know about when you're 6-7 years old but I knew I enjoyed my time with this girl. It was a connection that was pure and innocent.

Our field trip that year was to The Zoo. In class we made T-Shirts to wear with paint and animal sponges--and of course we made ours together. She picked up the elephant sponge and blotted a blue elephant on my shirt along with a heart she made with her finger. On the bus ride there we sat together and she told me something that would break my little heart. She told me she was moving to California. I don't remember much after that, I think we had few days left before the school year ended so we just spent as much time together as we could.

This has always been a memory stuck in my head, it’s something that I remember so clearly even though I was only 7. It was the first moment I realized what it meant to care for another. Sure, I was young but like all first experiences; this experience would shape a lot of my views today. And that is why I’ll always remember my first “Girlfriend”, Sarah Sharp.