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First dates, first kisses, first sexual encounters with a new partner or a first time trying something new. New experiences are often considered a little scary, intimidating or foreign.
The prospect of attempting something “different” can create an absolute tangle of stress. Apart from the fact that with no prior experience, things can go very wrong, there is also a massive chance of embarrassing oneself or, worse, being let down by the experience.
My first kiss was all of the above. There I was, 12 years old at a house party or “overs” as teens in my day used to call these hormone-fuelled gatherings. He was a year older, a dark haired, smug-faced youth wearing skater shoes two sizes too big and he had a wallet chain – I was enamoured.
Tensions were high as we alternated playing games of snake on his Nokia 3310 with his new personalised cover. The scent of his Ego deodorant lingered in the air as we paused to grab a slice of pizza – well, he did. I didn’t for fear of getting cheese stuck in my braces or, worse, ruining my frosty lip gloss. Priorities, right?
A black marker was lying off to one side. Opening the cap with loaded intentions, my snog mate pulled out his A game… one word and a question mark. Kiss? A quick nod and out to the garden we headed. Carried purely by the beat of my own heart, I took charge navigating our way into the cool night air.
And that was the most romantic aspect of it.
Then it happened. It was done. I had just had my first French kiss, a snog, a smidgeon of tonsil hockey with this supposedly “experienced” tutor.
Before that moment, my expectations of a passionate kiss were romanticised. A slow lead, a little peck that evolves into a deep passionate embrace and subsequently the most poignant moment in my life’s sexual exploration, but this illusion was dashed when I encountered a slobbery, helicopter – like dental exploration that was unexpectedly cold – as in temperature.
For lack of a better way to describe it, my brief kissing experience was like making out with a large-mouthed gappie who saw my tongue as a worm that it wanted to swallow.
One would think that a fundamental kiss like that would deter me from ever seeking out a mouth partner again to engage in a smooch, but 20 years later I can safely say that I’m glad that I didn’t give up.
In retrospect, the lessons learnt from that smooch proved a few things to me:
1. Sometimes you have to kiss a few frogs. It’s part of the swamp experience and provides a platform to learn from, despite facing challenges.
2. A bad physical experience can be one or both parties’ fault and just because you are an active participant does not necessarily mean you will make the act a successful one.
3. Said failures should not stop you from pressing on and trying again because practice makes perfect.
In conclusion, I will leave you with this. First experiences are fundamental but they are only experiences and should not dictate future intimate actions. So smooch away!
Lauri-Leah Momberg hosts a sex talk show on Mix 93.8FM
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