I love kissing, though it has played a strange role in my life. I remember my first kiss. It wasn’t that deep and passionate or soft and sensual kind. It was the innocent and sweet kind of experience. I can remember the way his warm, soft lips felt on mine, even now after 38 years. Time stopped in that moment for me. Not because it was a kiss, but because I think it was the first healthy expression of affection I ever received. Under the art table in Mrs. Bonnet’s class, with finger-paint smeared on my smock, James Sylvester kissed me. But more than that, his kiss made me aware there were things such as sweetness and beauty in the world. Does he remember the kiss? He says he did when nine years later, at the age of fourteen, he kissed me again behind the bleachers at a dog show.
There’s something quite intimate about kissing, at least for me. I don’t just kiss anyone, it has to feel right. I’m one of those people who don’t just do something to do it; it’s got to mean something. When I was teenager, I watched all my friends around me kissing all the time, but I never quite understood how some of them could be so casual about it; quite often kissing more than one person in a single day. I felt their free expression cheapened the experience. At least it did for me when I took a chance and engaged in a few careless kisses.
I know that was my doing, making the act of kissing something precious, something special. Don’t get me wrong; in the privacy of my room, I fantasized plenty about kissing, even practicing on my arm, my pillow, and even myself in the mirror. But when an opportunity came to engage, I often turned my head. Needless to say, during those awkward teen years, I didn’t keep boyfriends very long because they took my lack of kissing as a sign of disinterest. When I did find one I enjoyed kissing, who I opened my life and my heart, I discovered they enjoyed kissing many other lips besides my own.
I recently came out of a very long, committed relationship. Although I deeply care about this person, we were never a couple that kissed. We have kissed, but it was always awkward and devoid of passion, like kissing a brother or a best friend. I want passion. I want fire. I want chemistry. I want a kiss that I can feel all the way to my toes. I want to feel the tingle still on my lips long after the kiss is over. I want the memory of the kiss to cause my stomach to flutter and take my breath away. I want lips that are swollen and chapped from the excess and pressure of a good kiss. I know this exists. I’ve had a small taste. I want someone who will want to kiss me when I’m eighty and it mean just as much as it did the first time. I won’t apologize for wanting these things. In fact, I think it’s about time I started reaching for the things I want most in this life, including a kiss.
If you have a kiss like that, cherish and appreciate it.
Till next time,