I was listening to the Adult Contemporary station on the Sirius XM radio this morning and the song “All For Love” by Bryan Adams, Sting, and Rod Stewart came on. Immediately I was transported back to 1993 and the first time I fell in love.
And when I say I fell in love, I mean it. I fell hard. I went to see the movie “The Three Musketeers.” You remember it. It starred a pre-psychotic break Charlie Sheen, pre-superhuman government agent Kiefer Sutherland, a not-so-much smaller than he is now Oliver Platt, and the first man I ever loved, Chris O’Donnell. *Dreamy Sigh*
In all of my 13 years, I had never seen a man so wonderful, handsome, charming, and utterly amazing as Chris O’Donnell was to me the first time I saw the film. Oh, I’d had several TV crushes before, but nothing compared to the heart-fluttering, knee weakening, butterflied stomach feeling he gave me. I saw the movie in the theater 4 times. I cut his pictures out of those teen magazines and taped them to my closet door. And according to my mother, I wrote him a letter. (I don’t remember that though- I think my adult self has chosen to block that out. The rest of it is enough humiliation.) And “All For Love” became “our” song. I bought the movie as soon as it was released (yes, I still have the VHS I purchased). I remember staring at those pictures of him thinking that if he could just meet me, he’d be so amazed at how awesome I was. I didn’t factor in my crazy-stalker behavior or the fact that he was in his 20s. None of that mattered. All that mattered was that I was hopelessly in love. Don’t ask me to explain it. It defies explanation.
As the years passed I found many more celebrities to crush on, but I’ll always think fondly of Chris. Believe it or not, I don’t even watch NCIS (is that the show he’s on now?), nor do I purposefully see a movie because he’s in it. But I’ll always remember that he was my first love.
I think that’s what I find so fun about writing romantic fiction. With each story I get to recall those feelings of excitement that come with new love. I get to feel those butterflies, experience the weak knees, and sigh over the pure cheesy romance of it when the spark happens between my characters.
There’s nothing as wonderful as being in a committed, loving relationship (y’all know I’m very happily married), but there’s a little rush of joy that comes with writing about people falling in love for the first time. And if I need inspiration, I’ll listen to “All for Love” and think of my favorite D’Artagnan.
Who was your first love?