January 1999

When all around is madness
And there's no safe port in view
I long to turn my path forward
And spend some time with you



In the time that I have been writing for Oasis I've talked about some of the people who have been very special to me, but one that I have neglected to discuss enough is my boyfriend Eric. Sure, he's been mentioned a number of times but it seems that I only have talked about him in a negative and misrepresenting way. With this column I hope to change that.

I first met Eric when I was in fourth grade and we were assigned to the same table- in our elementary school students stayed with the same teacher for the entire day instead of changing classrooms for each subject-and we became instant friends. Or was it love at first sight? Throughout that school year we worked together on team classroom assignments, we sat together for lunch, and always tried to be on the same team in gym class. By the end of the school year he was my first best friend, and we became inseparable.

That summer I was given a bike as a present for having good grades and one of the first things I did was ride over to Eric's apartment to show it off...and I learned for the first time just how lucky I am. He lived in a rundown apartment complex, and their small one bedroom unit lacked a TV and had a air conditioner that didn't work. When he opened the refrigerator to get ice for the water he offered to me I could tell that it was almost empty, a stark contrast to the one at my home. When I asked him if he wanted to come over to my house to go swimming he frowned and said he couldn't because he didn't have a pair of swim trunks, so I offered to lend him a pair of mine. I would later learn that he didn't have much clothing at all.

Since he didn't have a bike it took a long time to reach my house, and in the sweltering June heat I felt my first attractions to his shirtless body. When he first saw my house he seemed amazed that I lived there, and compared to his small apartment it must have felt like a palace. As we changed in the cabana by our pool, my attraction to him grew along with my confusion for those feelings.

After we swam my Mom invited him to stay for lunch and judging by the way he ate it must have been his first decent meal in days. My Mom liked Eric from the first time she met him, and she especially loved how polite he was to her. After we drove him home I told her about the apartment he lived in, the bare refrigerator, and how he didn't even have swim trunks and my Mom asked me what I thought we should do? The answer became my first act of charity when I gave him my old bike, and it continued when I offered him some of my summer clothes. After my Mom met Eric's they became fast friends, and only recently did I learn how much moral and financial support my parents have given his Mom over the years. When I asked them about this they just told me that they have become like family to us, and families help the other members that are in need...charity made simple.

As we transformed from best friends and into lovers over the past few years Eric has been there for me when my life has been serenaded by tragedy, including some of the darkest moments in my life that I have yet to discuss. His friendship has kept me going through some difficult times, and he put up with me when I was next to impossible to get along with. He stayed with me while I was intimately involved with a girl, and forgave me when I came back to him. As a lover he knows how to satisfy me, and how to put me in the mood when I am not.

When people say that monogamy is impossible, I have to wonder if they have ever had a relationship like the one Eric and I share? We have been together longer than many marriages last, and in spite of all the rocky times we are still a couple as much in love together now as when we first met. Hopefully we will be together for the rest of our lives, and we love the idea of being able to marry someday.

Now that is a beautiful thing.


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