Thursday, July 15, 2010

Chapter 9- Kissing and Beyond

Immediately following the helicopter kiss I was feeling confident that I was experienced in the world of kissing. When my Jr. High friends spoke about kissing, I could easily chime in as an expert. Although I was smug about my newfound talent, I was concurrently repressing my guilt. We would frequently have morality lessons in our Church Young Women's lessons.

"French kissing simulates intercourse."

"Don't French kiss or you will need to repent."

“Never kiss before the third date.”

"The first time I kissed my wife was over the alter of the holy temple."

"Don't give your kisses out like pennies or they won't be worth anything".

Maybe there were other less-guilt-provoking pearls of wisdom taught, but those statements struck me to the core. I kept telling myself "all kisses aren't like The Helicopter Kiss. I'm sure the next kiss that I participate in will be an enjoyable, chaste, non-guilt-provoking kiss."

Well, at least, most were enjoyable…

Every summer of my teenage years, I attended Especially For Youth (EFY), a weeklong church camp at BYU. It was a bounteous spiritual feast, with side orders of immorality guilt and warnings about “necking”, “petting” and French kissing. In the For the Strength of Youth Pamphlet there were these elusive words inside: necking and petting. I had pondered the words many times and concluded that “necking” meant kissing on the neck and “petting” meant stroking the back. (I found out much, much later that “necking” actually meant making out and “petting” meant touching someone else’s private parts.) At the conclusion of every EFY week I gained a refreshed resolve to abstain from necking and French kissing. I learned that necking was a sin that needed to be confessed to the Bishop so I made an appointment. After my confession of being kissed on the neck, I’m sure the Bishop was absolutely chuckling inside that I came in to confess such a trivial sin and was relieved that I wasn’t involved in serious fornication.

Side note: I will be a devout Mormon until the day I die. But in considering other religions, I think I would make a great Catholic because I have ample experience in confessing my sins to religious leaders.

Marie, the funniest college roommate I ever lived with coined the term “rolled”. “Rolling” means making out; and “making out” means passionate kissing, sometimes in the horizontal plane. When a roommate would walk in from a date, voices from different areas of the apartment would yell out “Did you roll?”

“Oh yeah, we rolled, baby!” (Followed by high fives and ice cream).

Yes, girls “high five” too.

After dating a string of bad boys, I was set up with a guy named Jeremy. Blind dates hadn’t previously worked in my favor. I was once set up by my Grandma. That fact alone should be a red flag but she was so excited that I couldn’t refuse. The date ended with me standing on an interstate in a freezing, winter Carolina snowstorm after the boy’s car broke down. On a separate occasion, my mom set me up with her “dream son-in- law”. I resisted due to an uneasy concern about him. We later discovered that he was gay. Another blind date was with two identical twins, well, one of them. I felt like I was in a Parent Trap nightmare.

Blind dates illicit an excessive focus on physical looks. Upon my date’s first sight of me, I emerge triumphantly from behind a velvet curtain, with one hand on my hip and one hand in the air while concurrently spinning on a turntable so my date can analyze every angle. There’s a price tag dangling from my outstretched wrist. At least, that’s how I feel. However, I am just as shallow. I like to judge a guy over time and distance before going in for the kill. Blind dates force all of that superficiality into one moment, which is stressful on both ends. No, I am not a fan of blind dates.

Although my blind date history was tainted, I relented to my friends’ urges when I found out that Jeremy and I would be part of large group date. To my surprise, Jeremy turned to be scrumptious. He was smart, righteous, with a body to boot. We had a great time and after many dates we “rolled”.

Oh yeah, we rolled baby! (high fives, ice cream)

I was particularly smug about this fact but afterward, Jeremy was visibly distraught. I was distraught that he was distraught. That was the beginning of our end, even though we had hardly begun.

There are boys to date, boys to kiss, boys who are friends, boys to roll with and boys to marry. I’ve always been good about distinguishing which category the boy fit in. Jeremy fell into the category “Boys to Marry”. I was used to dating boys from other categories. Angrily, I realized my mistake. If I wanted to marry a righteous guy, I had to be a righteous person; one who mirrored his standards. What category would Jeremy put me in? Likely, I was in the “Girls that I might have married until I realized…” category. Rolling was not a righteous quality. I have to stop rolling with righteous guys! From that night on, I vowed to take it slow with guys from the “Guys to Marry” category. I needed to win their respect if I was to be their wife someday.

Well so much for taking it slow with Parke! We had kissed on our first date after spending practically the entire night up talking. Parke was unequivocally in the “Boys to Marry” category. But I also wanted him in the “Boys to Roll With” category, which, in my experience, was not a great idea. I warned myself to take it slow and above all, don’t ruin it!

Plus, I was fresh out of ice cream.

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