Throughout my life, I have, like many other adults, clocked up a fair amount of “firsts”; some eagerly planned for, others completely unexpected. Surprisingly few of those first times stand out vividly in my memory, but those that do often have a connection to my sexuality. I can remember my first kiss, a startling moment in my early teens where an older male (on whom I had a crush) whisked me away from my parents lounge room during a party and French kissed me in the corridor. This momentous occasion (which these days may have landed the fellow in trouble with the law) provided me with relived excitement for weeks, as I revisited the moment in memory and via a cautious diary entry written in code lest my parents have the nerve to read my private thoughts.
I also remember the first time I engaged in mutual sex play with my female “cousin”, marveling at how different her labia was to mine, but I can’t recall the first time I had intercourse. In a way it’s hardly surprising I can’t remember that first penetration – after months of “heavy petting” with my steady boyfriend, I suspect it was simply a natural progression. Either that, or it was an anti-climax after the high-pitched arousal of the months before.
Fortunately for my credibility as a functional human being I do vividly remember the first time I got married, but I remember the second time as well. And I remember my daughters first birthday, but not her birth, since it was a Caesarian section, and I was ill for days afterwards. Never the less, the day when the pain and drug haze finally parted provided me with a first moment of intense emotional bonding, which has carried my daughter and I through some 40 plus years and a number of tough events.
The intense shock, emotional pain and guilt associated with several instances of mutual betrayal and loss are also clear in my memory; and first times became entangled with last times as I, my husband and our child entered the then un-chartered waters of separation and divorce.
After that each of my emotional and sexual relationships provided their own catalogue of first and last times. First dates, first kisses, and first explorations of one another’s bodies, were bookended by corresponding last times, few of which stand out as intensely memorable. Throughout my life the process of connection with another significant human being has been relatively straight forward; and the disconnection, while never easy, has been accompanied by the possibility that there will be another love, another first kiss, another exploration. Yet an abrupt ending to a long-term relationship found me alone for the first time in 17 years. So it was that I needed and wanted somewhere new to live at a time where Mum’s ability to live independently was becoming increasingly compromised. It seemed natural to move into a house together, entering into a part-time Carer role with no real appreciation of the first and last times ahead as Mum’s condition progressed. In the intensity of this new beginning there was little time to mourn, far less time to consider that perhaps I had just had my last relationship, my last sexual encounter.
After Mum died, it bothered me that I had no memory of the last time I had “made love”, although I do still recall a series of last heartbroken embraces. In the aftermath of the “Day of the Orgasm” (now promoted to a first time experience through it’s unexpected arrival and intensity); toys were all very well, but I craved the sensuality and bodily presence of another human being; the delight of being possessed, rather than being in charge. However, I was and am enjoying my renewed independence, so the thought of entering into another relationship (even if I was able to locate another potential mate) was far from desirable.
With this in mind, and with my 64th birthday on the horizon, I decided to embark upon a first time experience that I would be able to recall in the event it proved to be truly my last time. After some careful research and exploratory exchanges, I hired the services of an experienced, mature male escort. Our time together, part of an extended birthday gift to myself which included a short overseas holiday; was fun and exciting and only a tad awkward. My personal tastes in this adventure were conventional: I bought some beautiful lingerie to make me feel sexy, and, since I had long cherished the commonplace desire to make love on a bed strewn with rose petals, I purchased flowers for this purpose. As first and last experiences go it was definitely memorable (though I do wonder what the hotel cleaning staff made of the petal stains all over the white doona) and I gratefully said goodbye to my companion, reassured that my body still knew what to do, but with no great need to repeat the experience any time soon…
I don’t know what first times I have ahead of me, although I am interested in finding out. The extent to which these future first times will include memorable sexual activities is indeterminate at the moment. However, since in the process of discovery I also intend to push against the limitations which are often inherent in the idea of last times, good sex is definitely not out of the picture.