Things are different now, I hope, for kids learning about their bodies and how they change. We had one talk with the parents and some really vague information in science and biology in school. REALLY vague. I had a baby brother to go with the three sisters so I knew about boys and how they were different from girls. I saw my dad naked by accident once, too. I walked in on my folks having sex once, that was a bad rush all around!
My parents sat me and my sister down and discussed the mechanics of sex one evening. Inspite of their obvious embarassment they got through it and the sis and I were all "Not ME!" icky and yuck about it. Too gross for words! But they did it. We understood it.
Niaeve is not the right word and ignorant isn't the right word, but some combination of both applied to me in my youth as far as boys went. I had my first peer kiss at 13. The neighbor boy and I went in the cabin and my sis and his friend stood look out. It was a dare you situation and we were going to kiss! It was all the horror you worry about, bumped noses, how to breath and then a closed lipped, dry and chaste touch on my lips - it was over. Then we switched off. They didn't take any longer and the later report was the same...boring, no bells and whistles, nothing.
I had held hands with some boys by 13 and that was really as far as it went. Kissing was too complicated for me and too intimate.
That was the same year my period started. I was at the Labor Day Street Dance and it was one of the rare times I wore a dress. Mom had made us all matching sun dresses and we wore them down town that day. While we were listening to our friends band I realized something damp was running down my thigh. I reached down and touched it discretely and my finger came back bloody. I gathered up the skirt in one hand at the side and shuffled with my legs together to find Mom. She and I went home and she fixed me up with a pad and a belt.
There had been no symtoms, no cramps or anything and I was totally surprised. Mostly though I had been embarassed as I was in the middle of a large crowd and everyone wanted to know why I was leaving. I couldn't answer because I didn't know. I told them I didn't feel well and ran off to get it fixed. Somehow the period thing got skipped in the sex talk and at school it was run by so fast it didn't stick in my head or I didn't believe it would happen to me.
Now I was a woman and I had been kissed once. Then I met the boy that could flip all my switched into overdrive. It would have been a risky business but we were both virgins and afraid of being laughed at so we really went very slowly into our friendship and mating.
Most of that first summer we would hang out with all my rotten sisters or his or our friends and were rarely alone together. Once in a while we would ditch all the kids and get off in the boat or along the side of the pond.
We were alone on the west side of the pond one day, sitting near the lagoon in lots of shade. Our bobbers were, as ordered by Mom, out far enough she could see us reeling in once in a while and we were shoulder to shoulder as we leaned back against a friendly tree. We were holding hands and making eyes at each other instead of talking.
We had reeled in and cast out again then reseated ourselves without getting our lines tangled up. We laid our poles beside us and I rotated, with his willing help, to lean up against his chest for a hug. I pulled back a little and looked right into those eyes only a few inches from mine and froze like looking at a cobra. Our faces moved together, our lips met, moved, melded, molded and melted. There was even a tongue flick! Wow!
We broke off, panting from the intesity of our response to that first electric intimacy. I couldn't look at him, I felt like my whole soul was naked with my love for him and he was breathing like he had just run a mile at full speed. We didn't need anyone to tell us we were over the line. I spun away until I was shoulder to shoulder with him again and we picked up our poles. Not a word was said for what seemed like a long time. We were thinking.
I knew that if hand holding could get me sweating and stammering, and hugs or an arm around my shoulder or waist could make me feel like I was not breathing that I liked the boy plenty. This kiss, though, that set me back on my heels. My chest hurt from breathing too hard, I was all quivery and, what I later called, gooshie inside, my lips throbbed with wanting another kiss. OH, ya! Did I want to kiss him again! What a feeling, what a rush, not stars, like the movies but a heat and a rythym and a yearning that I knew only he could fill. I needed slaking!
So did he. I was too uninformed to notice but he was suffering an agony of embarrassment because of his body's response to one kiss. While I didn't see it, I was watching my bobber, he was freaking that I would think he had no control over himself. Or that "that" was all he wanted.
We sat and suffered our private hells of teen angst for a good ten minutes, peeking out the sides of our eyes to see if the other was grossed out or what. Then I turned my head and gave him a soft kiss on the cheek. "That was something." I said.
"Really?", he asked as he leaned back a little more and turned to look back at me. I let him read it in my eyes and then said, "Yes.", in a quiet voice.
I could see something in him growing. I think it was self confidence. He gave me a look I was to know well in my later life but that was new to me that day. Roughly translated it meant, "My woman. Want woman." LOL. I knew what it meant and I leaned slightly in as he reached across with his far arm to take my shoulder and spin me into his arms again. I loved laying across his lap and being held in his arms that way. He tossed his hair back and pulled me up to kiss again.
We practiced a lot longer this time. When we got to hot to handle he stopped and helped me rise turn and lean back on the tree. We reeled in and cast again. The heat and tension in the air between us was electric and undeniable. And that was just kissing.
I was ashamed to realize that I was reviewing my scanty sex ed and that it not only didn't gross me out but if that was so much better than just kissing and kissing was that much better than hand holding, I was getting mighty curious.
It was near the end of our first summer, almost fall. We had found a new way to enjoy being together and we found it didn't wear thin with the passing of time, but grew harder to control and more intense as we got better at it. We were just getting into what was called petting when it was time to go back to school. With going to different schools and the time it took from us and the chores and babysitting and lawn mowing/raking/shoveling it was harder to find time to be together. It was quite awhile before we decided that we were going to take the big step.