The First Kiss

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When I was still a wee girl of about five years old a busybody neighbor lady complained to my mother that I was kissing all of the little boys who lived on my street. I don’t recall doing that, but I suppose it would not have been too unlikely. At that time in my life kisses were nothing more to me than a sign of affection. Kissing the boys would have been akin to kissing one of my little brothers. Sadly the woman’s accusation and my mother’s embarrassment over it suddenly made me very self conscious, as though I had done something terrible. I hate to think what would have happened if I had punched those boys in the noses instead!

In the first grade I got an invitation for a birthday party from a guy in my class named Peter. I was actually surprised because I had hardly even spoken to him. My mother supposed that he had invited everyone in the class just to be fair and polite. Anyway I attended the celebration mostly to because my mother thought that it would be rude to turn him down. 

I was surprised to see Peter’s home which in my mind was a mansion. It was a stately two story building with more square footage and rooms than I had ever before seen. During a lull in the activities Peter invited me on a tour of the place and to my horror, when we were away from the other guests he gave me a quick buss on the lips and confessed that he liked me. I really didn’t know how to handle what had happened, so I just ran back downstairs in shock leaving Peter alone and disappointed. I hope I did not ruin Peter’s special day too much.

I suppose that technically either my smooches with the boys on my street or the encounter with Peter  might qualify as my first kiss, but I like to think that such a grand designation only belongs to the first truly romantic kiss. If that is the case, then it would be a long while before I found myself locking lips with someone who sent me over the moon. That honor goes to the man that I married. 

The crazy thing is that I somehow knew that I had found my soulmate the first time he very softly brushed his lips against mine. I felt a kind of zing that I had never before experienced. In fact, most of my dates had been of the “one and done” variety because those kisses at the end of the evening had always felt as hollow and silly as the one I had shared with Peter. I did not want to pursue the relationships because there was just nothing there. 

I suppose that it was not really my future husband’s kiss that knocked me off of my feet as much as the almost instantaneous feeling that I had met my soulmate. I was generally shy about opening up my heart to anyone, but on our first date I told him things that not even my very best friends had heard. I had a sense that I was totally safe with him. Over time my instincts would prove to be right on target. 

The eternal question is whether a physical or emotional attraction comes first. I suppose that we are all a bit shallow when it comes to looks, but ultimately it is the essence of a person’s soul that captures our hearts. When there is a spark of kinship that first kiss becomes memorable and meaningful. 

I remember cautiously telling my friends that I had met the man of my dreams after only a single date with my future mate. I had never before felt so completely comfortable with anyone. To say it was love at first sight would be trite, but I do believe that we both saw something in each other that matched us better than any of those computer dating sites. 

I have a friend who lost her husband after caring for him for many years. She was quite exhausted by the time his life ended both physically and mentally. She had been grieving for him even before he died. When he was gone her life was quite empty. She had spent so much time caring for him that she did not know what to do with herself. Eventually she joined a group that matches older couples with one another.

Much like me in my youth she went through a period of one date disappointments, but eventually encountered a man who seemed to be perfect in every way. The first time they met each other they talked until long into the night. Because they were both retired they spent the next many days together realizing quickly how much they had in common and how comfortable they felt with each other. They were engaged and married within a few months and have lived happily ever since. 

There is a first kiss that may mean little and then there is a first kiss that sends a tingle down the spine. That kiss is not the reason that two people forge a relationship together. It is only a sign that the relationship is real and meaningful. That kiss fits like a perfect pair of shoes and feels like a million dollar pair. That is the kiss that lights the fires of love. 

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