She belonged in blossom pink or cerulean blue, sage green mixed with crisp white. But, all she wore was black or occasionally charcoal gray. On my single mom budget, I bought her skinny jeans at Target and cute cotton tops at Kohl’s. Still, she wore her baggy sweatpants and that black hoodie that hid her figure. Not that I wanted her to flaunt it, but I wanted her to own her beauty. Her glossy, raven hair was kept in a messy topknot at all times. Her stormy gray eyes, just like her father’s, almost blue, but not quite, were ringed in thick black liner. She was hiding. Better not to be noticed.
I was the complete opposite at sixteen. I wore tight, faded jeans: bleached and frayed, the denim almost white; and fuzzy angora sweaters that hugged my curves. My hair was in wild curls, just as inky black as Josie’s, but never pulled into a bun. The higher my curls were, the better and I went through a bottle of hair spray a month. I may have hit my peak back then.
My boyfriend, Billy, was crazy about me and we were kind of like a verse in a song, a song about longing and perfect love and innocence. We dated from the time we were fifteen until we were almost twenty. We were born three days apart and as we planned our yearly joint birthday party on the beach, I suddenly felt suffocated. I had celebrated my birthday the same way with the same people for four birthdays in a row and I just couldn’t do a fifth. I needed to break away and see what else was out in the world. But, I always wished I didn’t break Billy’s heart in the process. The song ended as I turned out of the parking lot and left me wondering what ever happened to Billy Leibowitz.
I’ve searched for him everywhere I could think of—Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram. I even looked on MySpace. I Googled him every few months for years—nothing. I couldn’t understand how someone could just disappear off the face of the Earth.