Friday, July 11, 2008


A few days ago, I got to thinking about firsts. First kisses, first loves, first success, first friends, first losses. The first time we have a certain experience. For some reason my memory was sparked by the movie Top Gun. It was on TV and it ignited a significant first - the first time I was kissed -- I had forgotten about this memory, and how old I was when it happened. Alas, the year was 1986 – I was 13 years old.

It is a daunting thought to think that my first real kiss, I was merely 13 years old. Being a parent to an 8 ½ year old daughter, it seems too young. I would be mortified if my daughter was being kissed at the tender age of 13, but as I remember in that moment, I felt so grown up, so mature.

A boy at school asked me out to a movie. He was the most popular boy at school and I remember being extremely nervous, because all the girls likes him, he was smart, funny and good-looking. I was not a popular girl at school; I was in the rebellious club.......we were the kids that didn’t fit in. I wasn’t a jock, I wasn’t a dork, I was different. Probably the best example I have of this is Molly Ringwald, in Sixteen Candles, or Pretty in Pink, when she plays the character of the outsider, not rich, not popular, not a dork, but different. I went to a private school with many rich kids, but I was not one of them. My parents were not rich, I had to take the bus to school, because they didn’t own a car, I am not even sure how they could afford to send me to this school, or why, but I remember being on the outside. Everyone liked me, and I made three best friends right away. We started our own club, MTRS. Mimi, Trish, Riz and Sam, their parents were not rich either, so the four of us had a lot in common. We were the kids that shopped at Thrift stores, borrowed each other’s clothes, and were fashion forward. I think I was sent home once, or twice for wearing jeans with tears in the knees, or a top that had only one sleeve. The year was 1986 after all, when blue eye shadow was necessary, big hair was a necessity, and tube socks worn with high top Reebok’s were totally tubular..…. We had never heard of name brands, like Polo, or Gap and even if we did, we could never have afforded them. Most of the kids at the school came from well-to-do families and their parents dropped them off in Mercedes Benz, Jaguars, or Cadillac’s. The four of us bonded immediately, since we were picked up by the Big Yellow Bus at a certain prescribed location.

Anyway, seeing Top Gun jolted my memory of my first kiss. His parents picked me at up at my horrific place of residences, and drove us to the Theatre at the Glendale Galleria. He paid for the tickets and off we went into the dark theatre. My hands were sweaty, my heart pounding hard, I didn’t know what to say, I was a nervous wreck. He didn’t know what to say either. So, there we are, sitting in silence for a long time, then suddenly during the scene when Tom Cruise and Kelly Maginus, “GET IT ON” to “take my breath away”, an arm comes from behind and lands around my shoulder, he turns to me, leans in and low an behold....... he kissed me. His mouth is open, which shocks me, what kind of kiss is this, is this normal? I pull away, because I am so embarrassed. Even though it lasted all of a few seconds, my cheeks are bright red and I am grateful it is dark in here. I turn away and pretend to be interested in the movie, but Tom and Kelly are still getting it on, and the love scene seems to go on forever, which makes me more embarrassed. I can’t remember anything else about the movie, but the song “take my breath away” takes on a completely new meaning now.........What I am going to tell Mimi, Riz and Sam? Will they think I have betrayed our club, because I went to a movie with a Jock and he kissed me? What will I say to him when I see him at school? I mean, jeez, I was 13 years old. I can barely process mathematics, let alone process my first kiss, especially to such a cheesy song like, “take my breath away.”

Looking back on this moment now, I have to give him a lot credit for being brave enough to bust a move. I don’t think I could look him in the face at school on Monday. I was so shell-shocked by the entire experience; I think it took me quite a long time to recover. But my epiphany is, that 'first' has the potential to rock your world, and they are important to remember. Each time we experience a first, we are learning more and more about others and ourselves. It takes courage and braveness to have a “first” experience, but they will enrich us and make us stronger. Even the little “first” like; getting a facial, cleaning a toilet, holding hands, starting a new job, playing a new board game, trying a new recipe, learning a new language, skydiving out of an airplane, or more significant firsts like; getting married, buying a house, starting a company, having your first child, or starting over in life.
Firsts are simply scary and fabulous rolled into one delightfully delicious ball! So get out there and have more firsts – you never know......... you may find that the ball of life starts bouncing higher and higher, until you find yourself on top of the world!