Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Have you ever?

Have you ever done something completely hurtful without realizing how bad it really is? I have put a new friend in an awkward position and my stupidity is no good excuse.

My friend Jag, whom I respect and adore, was such a good sport to go out with me the other night, but in blogging about my own idiocy I have left the impression that he was untoward. At no point that night did I ever feel like I was in danger of unwanted advances from him, he was a perfect gentleman, and sweeter to me than I deserve.

In eighth grade I had a crush on Les, he was a dreamboat and really into me, or so I thought. I am, as many of you may know, a late bloomer, so at this point in my life I had still not had a first kiss. Les and I were in choir together, and when the choir went up to SCICON for a fund-raiser, we sat with each other on the bus ride up. After our performance, Les asked me to take one of the hikes with him. We had been given a couple of hours to hang out around the campground and it seemed like everything, that my 13 year old brain could come up with, was going to happen. In fact, as we took the trail, with another couple, they fell away and it was just the two of us, holding hands and walking. Idyllic really. At a certain point in the trail we came up on a bridge over a small creek, our stopping point, and a pretty romantic spot. Not bad for a 13 yr. old lothario. We were talking, and at one point Les leaned over and kissed me, just a small peck on the lips. I was slightly dazed. We kept talking, and he once more tried to kiss me, but I put my hand on his chest and said 'Wait'. He seemed nonplussed. 'For what?' I just needed a minute to gather my thoughts, but he was gone. He took off back up the trail, and left me there, wondering what I had done to make him mad. I was late getting back to the bus, since I had not been paying much attention to the trail on the way down, I got lost two or three times finding my way back. When I got on the bus Les was already in the very back, cuddling with Wendy. The funny thing is, if he had just waited a few more minutes, up there on that bridge, let me gather my thoughts, I would have let him kiss me.

How does this story relate? I'm not sure, other than to tell you, I'm damaged. Life seems to want to go so fast, and sometimes I just need a moment to deal. Unfortunately, when I let life speed take over, I mess up.


  1. You are way too harsh on yourself. But it is extremely gratifying to read that you adore me. Two things occur to me after reading your story about Les. First, you should give up all ideas that you "mess up." Two people rarely are in perfect synch, and conflict is an inevitable part of every kind of human relationship. Your wish for a pause was just as valid as his desire to kiss you. We all have needs, all our needs are equally valid, but our needs frequently conflict with those of others. You are under no obligation to put your needs below other people's. They are their own responsibility, and you are yours. Second, you seem to have no awareness of your own power--and this is what can make you dangerous. In your story, you don't seem to realize that Les wasn't offended by you; his feelings were hurt. He was looking to you for validation of his own desirability, and when he didn't get it, he probably felt that he had "messed up." We live in a culture that wants us all to feel powerless, and women, I think, are especially told that feeling powerless is the same thing as never hurting anyone. But it's impossible to completely avoid hurting people, and it's only when you're aware of that that you can act responsibly to avoid what hurt you can.

  2. Can't say anything better than Jag just did. I'm just commenting to let you know I read this and enjoyed it.

  3. Maybe it's because we are Cancers, sister, 'cause I feel your pain!