My first kiss was a boy who was 5 and I was 7 in the woods behind the apartment. A slimy little peck on the lips on a dare and then I kissed his best friend because it was only fair since he had kept watch.
I was maybe 8; I was in the backyard of my stepmoms parent’s house. They were heavy smokers, you could have written your name with your fingernail in the smoke stains on the walls. The ashtrays were always full. There was a fuzzy T.V. in the living room that always had on the Grande Ole Opry or the Andy Griffith show. There was a mobile home in the driveway that I don’t think ever went anywhere but they were glad to own it and good at dreaming about it.
The neighbor boy was over, he was my same age. We were sitting against a sidewall of the house underneath a bedroom window on top of some kind of wooden electric box. I told the neighbor boy I wasn’t sure if I wanted to have kids. He said he definitely wanted to have one hundred of them. I was proud of my knowledge of sex; it was something I loved to disseminate. I informed him that to have one hundred babies he would have to engage in intercourse one hundred times. That was the end of that conversation and we moved onto whatever else 8 year olds like to talk about.
It was a little while later when she came out. She told that boy to leave and I remember standing in the sun facing her. She stood close. I remember what her sweat smelled like. It was not the first time that I was too close to her sweat.
She told me that she had heard everything. I didn’t know what she meant. She said she heard me talking sexy to that neighbor boy and that now she knew the truth about me.
The year before it had come out that a cousin had been molesting me since I was 4. The family had forgotten about it rather quickly. I still got left alone with him regularly.
In the backyard under a hot hot sun she told me that now she knew that I had seduced my cousin and she asked how I would like it if she told my whole family the truth.
I stood shaking. I didn’t say anything. Seductress, liar, slut, troublemaker, I just stood and absorbed this new information.
It was hard in California because the other 9 year old in my apartments had a little brother who we had to bring a long with us. When we would play doctor he would be the receptionist. We would lock him in the walk in closet, which was the waiting room. The walls were thick and you couldn’t hear him holler really.
He was cute. He looked like a bulldog. His cheeks were very saggy for a little guy. He was my favorite neighbor boy because we didn’t do anything gross like with the others. He just taught me how to ride a bike in the cul-de-sac. Every other ten year old in the state could ride a bike but I was a late bloomer.
I tried futily to avoid doing things that hurt while you learned them.