Men’s Green Merino Wool Sweater
Not your average green sweater, this one is an artifact from a relationship that took place in Cleveland, OH between November 11, 2014 and February 21, 2016.
We were an odd pairing from the start. He, a 6-foot-2-inch redhead. Me, a 5-foot-4-inch petite blonde. He always had a quirky approach to dressing while I always tried to look well put together. We were two independent minds who met online and fell into a strong friendship and love came after. We were attracted to one another, we were good company together, and our relationship blossomed. He was my first everything: long-term relationship, sexual experience, etc. Every month I celebrated a milestone, as if I was surprised we’d made it as long as we did. I always joked that I would scare him away somehow.
He was happy, I was happy. After a year, I thought we were onto something wonderful. I loved the way he called me “hot stuff,” the way his butt looked in jeans, I loved the way he held me when I slept next to him, and I loved the way he smelled. I got used to complaints from my friends that my passenger seat was too far back (to make room for his tall frame). I grew to like his long, wild red hair. I stopped worrying that our relationship would end.
One of my favorite stories to tell about the early days of our relationship was about our first date. We arrange to meet up at a coffee house and then go to a movie screening. We exchanged phone numbers and I texted him to let him know I had parked and was making my way to the coffee house. He texted back “I’m in the green sweater.” Which made me laugh. I wondered if the coffee house was full of tall redheads with long hair and the only way to spot him would be that green sweater! He, of course, sat toward the front and was easy to spot, without the aid of the sweater.
Due to a laundry mishap, he shrunk infamous green sweater! He gave it to me to wear one night when it was cold out. For our one-year anniversary, I gave him a new green sweater, and had hopes the “green sweater story” would become one of those tales couples share after years and years of being together.
This year, he went on a trip to Mexico with the family, and I traveled for work, too. Our last time together. Until he stopped messaging me back at all.
We made plans to go to a friend’s brunch party upon his return, and although he seemed off, I assumed it was from his long, late flight the day before. We spent the day together, watched Netflix, kissed, exchanged Valentine’s Day gifts, and walked around the neighborhood. After our walk, he told me he did some thinking about our future while in Mexico, and because he didn’t feel this strong drive to get married, move in, or do anything he was afraid he was wasting my time.
Naturally, I was blindsided by this. He cried, I cried. And we agreed to take a break. But then he told everyone we broke up, which made it harder for me to process what happened.
I wished he would have tried to save what we had, because we could have learned so much from each another. But, his mind was made up. Now when I look back at the infamous green sweater, I don’t see a cute story to share with friends or pass down to our phantom kids. I just see a shrunken sweater.