With This Ring.

I tricked him into being my boyfriend. One morning before class began, I took a ring I’d gotten in one of those clear plastic bubbles and placed it in my mailbox. The mailboxes were in our classroom; merely constructed of cardboard shaped into rectangles. I’d put a tag on the ring: “To Holly, From Andy.”

He was one of the most popular boys in my second grade class; a class that was made up of mostly girls. When Andy arrived, I pushed the ring onto my finger and pranced in his direction. The ring was a tarnished gold color that tied into a knot in the middle of my finger.

“Thanks for the ring,” I said proudly.

“What?” He asked.

“This ring was in my mailbox,” I said, putting my hand in front of his face. “The tag said it was from you.”

The remainder of the day was spent showing off the ring to our classmates.

“See, I got this for her,” he said, holding my hand.

A relationship in the second grade meant almost nothing. Andy and I never kissed or went places together. We sent messages to one another through our classmates and sat next to each other on the computer bus.

While my relationship with Andy was my first, in many ways it set the tone for several of the ones to come. It was short-lived, it involved very little communication, and I had to share him with other women—Andy was “dating” almost all of my classmates.

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