Our Bodies, Our Shh. . .

  1. Our Bodies, Our Shh. . .

I lied awake in a bed not my own, in a room all to myself, supremely content to be alone after a long day of traveling with my mother and sister and then being at the mercy of our hostess once we arrived. The next hour before I fell asleep was all mine.

I examined the guest bedroom: a large, colorful map of the world hung over the long side of my bed. On the opposite wall a bookshelf teemed with exotic books. We were staying with my aunt, the "cool" aunt who played hockey and did curling and didn't get married until she was fifty. I was very curious as to what kind of books she would own.

I slid off the bed and sat Indian style in front of the shelf, running my fingers over each book until I came to the most promising: a 1976 edition of Our Bodies, Ourselves. Had I heard of the book before? I'm not sure. But somehow I knew exactly what it was about.

I flipped the pages quietly until I found the most engrossing section. I slid over to the door and sat with my back against it. I wanted to make sure no one could walk in on me as I poured over a series of black and white drawings of two people in various sexual positions. The woman had a good dose of pubic hair down there, and the guy did too, with the addition of. . .a penis.

Weeeeiiiirrrdd. . .

I turned a few more pages, stopping when I got to a section titled "Homosexuality."

Now this is taboo. . .

I read the various definitions. "Lesbianism." Had I known what that was before? Maybe. I had certainly never met a lesbian in real life.

Lucky for me there were several black and white photographs of them on the page; one of them featured two women cuddling on a sofa. It was sweet. It looked soft. Comfortable. Like best friends.

I read the testimonies of women who had "come out" as lesbians. One lady said she and a close friend were sitting on a couch when they started tickling each other. Then, somehow, they started kissing.

That sounded sweet to me. Very intriguing. I could see how that would happen. I loved my friends, especially Amy.

I felt a twinge of inversion in my gut.

Kissing Amy?

I replaced the book exactly where I found it and crawled back into bed, ruminating over what I had just learned.

Sarah Weik

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