Wednesday, March 24, 2010

First meaningful kiss...



The most significant and meaningful kiss of my life was the first kiss I gave the woman that became my wife! She was and is the only woman that I have kissed in a romantic, meaningful way. That kiss was a miracle that changed my life forever. This post, however, is not an account of that miracle kiss. I have debated long and hard about actually posting this entry. It is something very personal to me, but something that occurred nearly three decades ago (after my mission but before meeting my wife), and something that also changed me forever.

In the end, I have felt this was a good exercise (thanks Abe) to get down on paper and maybe it will help you to peek into my world and glimpse a bit more of who I am...

My first meaningful kiss...

Once there was a recently returned missionary who, within the first year of coming home, returned back to his mission field to attend the wedding of a dear friend he had become very close to during his mission. In route to attending this wedding, this particular RM detoured through a city he had served in to meet up with another very dear friend. This friend and the RM were about the same age and really close, maybe closer than what would be considered “appropriate” between two young men for the typical homophobic member of the church coming from a Utah perspective. These two were very “touchy” and affectionate with each other, and it was obvious to everyone that they liked each other a lot – in a brotherly way. However, because this was not the U.S, such things were not particularly unheard of and no one really said much about their relationship thinking the RM had simply adopted the cultural norms of the friend.

As it worked out, the RM and this friend, Fabrizio, spent a few days together prior to the wedding of their mutual friend. Much of this time was spent alone, on a train, in his car, walking around, eating out, and hanging out. They had a great time together and were really enjoying the “freedom” of their relationship as two friendly brothers instead of as a friend and a missionary with a name tag, companion, and mission rules to obey, holding hands, hugging and being in “touch” with each other almost constantly. They shared deep thoughts in lengthy discussions, both spiritual and otherwise, and there was a real sense of bonding between them. The RM felt something for Fabrizio and Fabrizio sensed it and knew maybe more than the RM on what was going on inside his American friend, but didn’t really say anything about that particular subject.

On their last night together, they returned to his parents’ home. His mother and father and a brother and sister were there and they had a fabulous dinner together with warm conversation and great spiritual connections. The RM felt like he was not a visitor or stranger in this home. In fact, he felt just the opposite – he had come home!

That night, the two went to his bedroom to make sleeping arrangements. There was only one twin bed in the room. Fabrizio’s mother set up a spare mattress on the floor next to the bed, and supplied her son with some extra bedding and kissed us both good. The two shut the door and smiled with a sigh. They giggled a bit at the whole scenario and argued between them over who was going to sleep in the bed and who was going to sleep on the floor. The RM insisted on taking the floor and Fabrizio wouldn’t hear of it and they broke into a bit of a wrestling match and collapsed together on the mattress on the floor. They talked for what seemed like late into the night while holding each other and then finally settled down to reconciling themselves to needing some sleep.

The physical attraction and tension between the two was beyond anything that the RM had felt before in his 21 years living in America. Fabrizio turned off the lights and they proceeded to cautiously strip down to their underwear, Fabrizio with his tighty-whities and the RM with his garments. There was enough indirect light coming through the windows that they could still see each other clearly. The two smiled and then came to the twin bed and cuddled together, holding each other. The RM breathed in the moment as he held his special “brother”. He had never felt so amazingly whole and happy and real.

Finally, Fabrizio slithered down to the mattress on the floor as they whispered “good night” to each other. For a moment, they both were still. No one spoke. The summer air though silent, thick and heavy remained suspended around them increasing the sense of tension. The RM listened to the breathing of Fabrizio. He was feeling so excited and wanted something more – “a simple “good night” was not good enough for such an occasion, no?” he thought…


He slipped down on top of his friend and with a bit of abandonment, the two started kissing. At first it was just a peck on the cheek, and then the other, and then a bit on the forehead and the neck, but then they kissed a single, meaningful kiss on the lips. It was magical and full of those proverbial fireworks!! Both were obviously excited and each knew and felt just how much. To the RM’s surprise, Fabrizio pulled back and, looking directly at the "excitement" under his garments the RM was wearing, said something like: “um… as much as I’d like to, maybe we’d better not continue this, if you know what I mean? I mean, maybe you should remember who you are and we’d be better off if you were up in that bed and me remaining down here.”

This was strange hearing such caution from the fearless and usually instigating Fabrizio. He was always the encouraging one, the affectionate one, then initiator of touch. He was the teacher and the RM was the pupil. The RM was a bit embarrassed, and acknowledged instantly that though he really didn’t want to, he recognized it was probably the appropriate thing to do – the only thing that he should do and there really was no room for arguing. A bit of shame had entered that dark bedroom on that summer’s night. So, he slipped up to the twin bed, carefully rolled over, and earnestly tried to gain control of his racing heart and emotions, not understanding what was happening to him. What was happening? Wasn’t this what this cultural brotherhood between them, this “special bond” was all about? Why could he not go any further? Did he just cross a line he covenanted not to cross? He hungered for more, but that was it – there was nothing more.

The next morning, not a lot was said between the two of them as they grabbed a quick breakfast. Nothing was mentioned about “the kiss” and the associated “mutual excitement”. The RM soon had to catch a train, and with a quick “all-knowing and all-saying” hug between the two of them and a meaningful tear streaking his cheek, he slipped out the door, down the stairs and out of the country.

As for the “rest of the story”… well, yes, there is another chapter, but that is to be shared on another day. Needless to say, this event, this “first meaningful kiss” between them, was never, ever forgotten. Something changed inside both of them. They both knew it, but neither discussed it, or the ramifications of it, for a very, long time.

14 comments:

playasinmar said...

Maybe I'm getting my bloggers confused, maybe. But aren't you the same Beck who is always on about "Kissing is icky," and "I don't like kissing," and to whom, "You're not kissing the right gender," is often shouted?!

Unless I have you confused with someone else.

Beck said...

You're definitely not referring to me. You are confusing me with Abelard.

I love kissing!

Jon said...

Great story. Kissing is most definitely not icky.

Sean said...

Another twist to the story of Beck...

Thanks for sharing and thanks for being a good friend! :)

str8ontilmorning said...

gosh, I'm jealous at some level to have a story of this nature ... but alas, no kisses of this flavor for me.

Beck said...

JON: "... Kissing is most definitely not icky..." Yeah, particularly this kind between friends where neither really knew what was going on completely.

SEAN: This story has always been there as it is my story. This young man is still there inside me. Though I tried to hide him away, I couldn't. He's still there.


KENGO: Don't be too jealous... this story triggered a bunch of self-denial and self-loathing experiences for decades to come. Deep down, though, I was never ashamed of what happened or why. I felt guilt, and I denied it was a "gay" thing to do, but it was always a magical once-in-a-lifetime moment that I have always treasured. What happened after is what I'm ashamed of...

MoHoHawaii said...

Heartbreaking.

MoHoHawaii said...
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me said...

Just to let you know, someone else gave Abe the idea for this month's topic... :)

Beck said...

MOHOH: It wasn't as bad as all that, was it? The "heartbreaking" part comes in Chapter 2.

ME: Thank you very much for the original idea. I didn't mean to slight you, but it was Abe's blog where I noticed the "assignment". I thank you for the change to get this "first" down in writing, and for the perspective it has brought to my putting the pieces of my past together.

me said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MoHoHawaii said...

Well, part one had me reaching for the Kleenex. I can't imagine what part two will be like....

Beck said...

MOHOH: I wasn't really planning on writing Chapter Two just yet, but your comment spurs me on. Maybe I'll get to it this weekend - if the emotions are there to tackle it.

Beck said...

For the record, here's part of a response from a fellow reader to this from an email exchange that I am entering here as it speaks to why we blog such things and how they benefit the writer and the reader both:

Reader: Wow, that is a powerful account. I hope you won't take it down. You've captured it, almost cinematically, and I love the subtle part about your thinking about what does this mean that I have felt these feelings and kissed this friend in this way. How do you feel now that you've posted it?

Me: Embarrassed, a bit vulnerable.

Reader: You are a wonderful, tender man. I'm so glad we are friends. You've taught me so much about being authentic. I think it is a beautiful, wonderful account, but yes, of course, you are exposed. But what we see is a treasure.

Me: Really? thanks.

Reader: Don't you love the young man that is still there inside you? He's a good fellow.

Me: He's still there. I see him and feel him and know he's still there. But, insome ways, shouldn't I have moved on from him by now?

Reader: He's part of what makes you, you. You have moved on, incorporating him into the larger structure of your life as a husband, father, professional, friend, son, leader. You wouldn't have a family and a profession if you hadn't moved on. We wouldn't be friends, because you wouldn't have writtend a blog, if you hadn't moved on. That's the beauty of getting older. We're not just our age, but we are ALL our ages, if we don't lose track of them.

Me: I really like that!

Reader: .... It's not the kid that's writing. It's the you, here and now. The you that has moved on, but incorporated his life experiences, integrated them into the authentic you.

Me: You would make a great therapist! Thanks for putting it in a better perspective.

Reader: No, but I'm glad to be a friend of a great man.