As a teenager, I was always sure I was the last one to do anything.
In sixth grade, I envied girls who had training bras. I didn't smoke pot until I was in college. Same with drinking. (Now as a parent, I think waiting to do those kinds of things is a great idea.)
But what I really, really wanted was a boyfriend. I was sure I was the only 15 year old who hadn't been kissed. Most of my friends didn't have boyfriends, but still I felt left out.
So. It was summer. My friend Sheila Schmitz (now the editor of the cool site Houzz.com) had some kind of volunteer gig at a park where she would paint kids' faces. She persuaded me to join her. Sheila was (and is) artistic. I was (and still am and always be) not.
And then a boy appeared. His name was Leo. And asked me to paint his cheek. We started talking and didn't stop. And at some point, he persuaded me to take a break and kissed me. And we met the next day and kissed and kissed and kissed some more. Kissed until our lips were sore.
Leo was experienced. I was not. Leo wanted things to go further. Right away. I didn't know what I wanted.
Leo lived on the other side of town, which meant we didn't go to the same schools.
But then I found out the truth. The horrifying truth. I was 15. But Leo? Leo was 12. I was so embarrassed. I knew I had to end things soon. Certainly before school began.
So my summer love was over nearly as soon as it began.