Unlike Ariana, I’m not single (and I’m not a pop star); I have been married for 6 years. My husband and I got married rather quickly after falling in love in Vegas, “our Las Vegas love affair” we affectionately reminisce. After that weekend, at 24 years old, I packed my bags and moved from Canada to California to be with him. For these last few years, we’ve been happily “super married.”
Now I wouldn’t necessarily call myself a stan Ariana Grande fan, but each time I listened to the hit, it nudged me. Like a dusting off of old memories of own my past relationships, I kept asking myself this specific question: what did my exes teach me?
In order to give proper thanks, I needed to map out my relationship timeline. I had to go to the very beginning. I wrote down my list of men, err boys, many that I’d long forgotten about.
The first name on the list was Maxim, a French boy I met at summer camp in Maine, who I had fallen madly in love with. I was 12. He wasn’t my first kiss, but he was the best kiss I’d had up until that point. Remembering him I thought, “How cliche! A french boy good at french kissing.” He wrote me love notes with lots of grammatical errors (which was like, sooo cute), and he told me I was beautiful. The last night at camp we made out by the fire, professing how much we’d miss each other and vowing to become pen pals. We’d even promised to see each other once a year. Later that evening, as I was walking back to my cabin, I found him making out with another, older girl. I was heartbroken. When I got home I listened exclusively to depressing pre-teen songs while my mother tried to figure out what the hell happened to me at camp. “I met I boy…” I finally admitted to her. Though I would learn this many times, Maxim taught me first: Be suspicious of grand romantic gestures — they can be shady and deceitful, and usually come at a cost (heartbreak).