School Bells to Wedding Bells
by Mandy Manoski
“You had sex?! With her?!!” screamed Rebecca at Michael, the boy who was supposed to be hers.
It wouldn’t have been that big of a deal. People cheat, right? That’s what high school’s for, trying new things, new people. Live and learn … that’s what everyone says.
Rebecca’s boyfriend cheated on her with Melissa, her best friend, and she cried. She ate ice-cream and gladly helped in spreading that back-stabber’s newly gained reputation as a slut. Of course, that’s after she threw-up for hours and the dry heaving had finally stopped.
Then Rebecca looked down at her left hand.
That’s what made it a big deal.
She and Michael had a promise.
He was supposed to love her. Cherish her. Not go having sex with her best friend!
Being engaged was supposed to keep all that dumb high-school stuff from happening Rebecca thought. Asking someone to be your one and only generally meant you wanted no one else.
So why the hell was Michael running around looking for his pants, in Melissa’s room, while Rebecca stood at the door, tears streaming down her face. Her eyes not quite able to meet Melissa’s, who stood in the corner wrapped in a sheet. Rebecca stared down at the ring that once symbolized her future and now seemed like no more than a cheap piece of metal.
Did this happen because I am 16, she wonders? Am I learning this lesson because I was looking at wedding dresses when my friends were looking at prom dresses? Is this what happens when you aren’t old enough to buy the alcohol for your own wedding reception?
A 20-year-old Rebecca remembers and shrugs her shoulders.
“Who knows why,” she says. “All I know was I thought we were going to be forever. Everyone did, but we didn’t even make it to graduation.”
“If I’d married Michael, none of this would have been possible,” she says holding up her hands and looking around.