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  • When you think of your first love most everyone will think chronologically, as I did.

    Thirty eight years ago I was six. I distinctly remember being at Jack Bob's playground in Mt. Pleasant Pennsylvania for what today is referred to as a 'play date'. Becky Hart, four years my senior, was my first memory of that crazy feeling that I could only equate to being love. I know what you are thinking, love at age six is reserved for parents, siblings, extended family members and maybe your pet, but Becky was my friend. I had fun with her, I trusted her, and in some six-year-old way, I respected her.

    Over the next three decades I began to research the topic by marrying, having kids, divorcing, re-marring, and divorcing again. I have witnessed love from many different perspectives in my life.

    The truest, and most memorable form of love that I have ever felt in my life is now with me today and in some ways have been with me since that day on the playground oh so long ago.

    We met when we were in high school and life proceeded to take us in very different directions. I was focused on starting a family while she was starting her career. Twenty or so years passed, children were born, promotions were attained, relationship were created and ended, and then universe's plan was revealed.

    After a lifetime of searching for love, changing who I was to have it, she came back into my life as my friend. What I realized was that I had fun with her, I trusted her, and in a forty-two-year-old way I respected her. Never once in my past had I built a relationship on those three things, fun, trust and respect. I have always had to sacrifice a part of myself, a part of love, to be 'happy' in my relationships. Not this time.

    I have met my Lumper. What is that you ask? The best way I can explain it is... if the person that you love, loves you for the person you truly are, then you have found your lumper. How rare is this? Based on my 30+ years of research, very.

    Laurel, my Lumper, you have shown me the true meaning of love and I dedicate this to you. Thank you for loving me for being me.

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