I remember…

I remember the first time I saw you.

I remember thinking how I had never met anyone quite like you before. Watching you walk in and take the open seat next to me. Sometimes I think I loved you even then…even before I knew you. I just felt so happy and peaceful. You're smile and your laugh as you teased me about the assignment given…for being such a nerd. I remember how you told me you knew me before I knew you. Because of my dad. I remember thinking how it was possible I had never seen you before this day.

I remember the day you tried to set me up with your friend. You walked past me and told me that he liked me—I remember how you warned me the next day that he was a player. I remember sticking my nose in the air and claiming not to care. I remember you raising your eyebrows in disbelief. I told you I wasn't superficial…that I didn't judge a person by their looks. I preferred a guy with a brain.

I remember how close we got in that class. How much we would flirt about who was smarter.

I remember the day I realized how much I liked you. I had never seen someone so perfect. Someone who made me better. Someone who made me want to be more than just an ordinary school girl.

I remember the day I thought you liked me too. It was at In & out. You had gotten so mad at me for not staying with you...for leaving with someone else—I had been so scared by your sudden jealousy and yet so happy…I remember the day you broke my heart. I really thought the girl you had been talking about was me. I wonder why I was never good enough for you…why it never occurred to you that maybe we could be together.

I remember the day you said you wouldn't go out with me because I was the coach's daughter. I remember the struggle I went through to try to get you out of my head. It was a lost cause. You had already changed me. I had never met anyone like you before. You were so smart and mature—with child eyes and a youthful soul. You were strong and yet somehow gentle. Funny and playful and yet serious at the same time. You made me laugh and smile. Sometimes I wanted to kiss you senseless other times I wanted to kill you, but that's love I suppose…

I remember the moments when you would give me a bear hug—lifting my feet off the ground, making my breath catch in my throat as I breathed you in. How you threatened you'd never let me go. I loved it when you did things like that.

I remember how you always made sure everyone was alright. How you put everyone before yourself.

I remember how you used to watch me when I walked past you—how your eyes danced after me whenever I said something or smiled. How you absorbed everything I said as I were the most important thing in your world. How you'd check to see if I was laughing to, to see if I understood-to see if I was paying attention to you. I always was.

I'll never forget how it looked to me when you ran across the field during football practice or scored a touchdown during a game. I was so happy for you. Seeing you smile like that—or even smile and laugh period was the best feeling in the world.

That's why I let you go—why I let you just be a friend, because even though it killed me to see you love someone else I knew she made you happy and really, that's all I want. Just for you to smile like you did the first day I saw you after I told you I liked you—everyday for the rest of your life. Can you do that for me?

I remember the day I saw you with her at prom. I remember the way you looked at me when you saw how beautiful I looked in my dress. I had ignored you because I knew I could never make you happy the way she could.

You had looked at her the way I had always imagined you would look at me. You were my best friend. I remember going home and crying on my bed—in my prom dress, mascara running down my cheeks.

I remember watching you get your diploma—texting you that night to make sure you were alright. I remember missing you that summer with everything that I had.

I remember the day before you left for school. You picked me up in a bear hug—the last hug I would ever get from you and you told me you'd miss me.

I didn't say anything. I just wanted you to be happy.

Now I wish I had said it. I wish I had told you what I had held back for so long. I wish I had said the words that would've made you mine, the words that would've made you stay.

I love you.

I will always love you. You are everything I ever wanted, but I also know that if I really love you I should let you go….