Kissing and telling — talk about an idiom with a loaded history, and not all of it stellar. After all, it’s probably one of the reasons behind most discontent in this world. Kissing or the lack of it. It’s a euphemism that’s been with us longer than the US constitution (by almost a 100 years actually), and it is still a tacky no-no. And somehow I doubt Justin Bieber’s song by the same name has helped its poor image.
And yet, there’s a whole lotta good to be had in kissing and telling. It’s all about the execution of the plan.
That first moment. Perhaps of the rest of your life.
I was thinking about kissing, and the people in my life I’ve been moved to kiss today because someone posted out on Reddit the video of Bright Eyes’ “First Day of My Life“. I’ve liked this song since I first heard it back in ’06. But now seeing this video all these years later….
I’m thinking it was a good reminder of the first time I laid eyes on some folks, the first kisses I gave them, how those kisses set into motion the first days of the rest of my life.
Take a moment and go watch the video. I’ll grab another coffee. No worries, I’ll give you a moment.
If you’re like me, you watched it more than once. That second time you were catching the nuances of the people and their lives at that moment. The raised eyebrows, the smiles, the fingers moving of their own accord, their quietness as they listened with ears and hearts. The position of the camera to the couch with dishes and utensils in the background, grounding tender moments with what feeds us. I like it.
There are kisses meant to stay private, hidden in the darkness, only remembered by those who gave and received them. Go ahead and keep them quiet. But the kisses meant to be shouted about from rooftops, arms held wide open against the wind in a personal Titanic-moment? Yeah, those. Let’s tell about them. Those are the kisses for our shared history books.
The first time I kissed Mister Soandso? Over 22 years ago, in college. It was a bit hesitant…who knew it really was the first of 22 years’ worth of kisses?
The first time I kissed each one of my babies? It was like no other touch…of finally holding with my hands what my heart had held for so long, I couldn’t help myself. I had to kiss them.
The first time I kissed a friend mourning the death of a loved one? My heart broke a bit for them.
The first time I kissed a complete stranger? I was on a train, headed to Nice. Someday I’ll write you that story…
The first time I kissed a boy? Not until high school. But the first time I was kissed? The same time I was first pooped on by a bird. Yet another story.
So many kisses…
One of my favorite poets, Edna St. Vincent Millay wrote about kisses and some days those lines repeat in my head like any good poets’ words often do. Kisses and the lips upon which we left those kisses are always with us. Even if those kisses are only in our memories as we sit on soft couches, lost in moments from long ago.
I think today I shall leave my loved-ones a few more kisses, just in case their memories are dim. After all, what could be a better way of beginning the first day of the rest of my life than with a kiss?