By Tiffani “Let’s Talk About Sex” Michele
When discussing the topic for this month, all of us ladies of O+U decided it was only reasonable to assume that February would be devoted to love. All things love. Love love lovey love. We all have love, feel love, give love, receive love, love the love!
And then no one posted anything.
And then we were all, “OK, how about love and/or sex?!” and that got us excited again! For a second. And then no one posted anything.
Isn’t it interesting that the two things that drive our entire human experience are also the two things that are the hardest to maintain/have energy for/open up to/accept/give. Songs are sung, poems are written, facebook status updates typed out, tweets sent, love notes poured over, sex help books penned, porn posted online, and thousands upon thousands of wishes made for love and sex. Humanity spends a lot of time and energy and money in the pursuit of both these things.
My first love note, 9 years old.
We all want it.
We all need it.
So why are both love and sex so difficult to nourish and keep around? How is it that these two things aren’t the easiest parts of our collective lives rather than the stress, heartbreak and complications they often become?
My married friends complain about taking care of all the errands/responsibilities/work issues/life problems in their everyday lives and then not having enough energy for sex. They talk in exasperated tones about having to give so much of themselves to kids/spouse that they just don’t get a break. They fantasize about getting away for a little bit all by themselves. I remember; I used to be there, do that.
My single friends complain about doing all the work of living life without the bonus of having awesome sex to make it worth it. They talk about having so much to offer but no one around to want and appreciate it. They fantasize about sharing some of their alone time with someone else that they can laugh/cry/share/eat/grind all over. I know; I am there, think that.
I remember being married and comparing notes with my other married friends…how often do you have sex, and for about how long, and do you really get into it or just do plain old vanilla sex…just to see if my twice a week/10 minutes/same old routine experience was the norm or not. It wasn’t unusual to mentally schedule a night (or nights) for sex so that I could prepare myself during the day and try to keep the stress/busyness at bay. And so I could shave and groom. And actually put on makeup and/or a bra. When it wasn’t those scheduled nights, I would get undressed quickly in my closet with the door closed so that there would be no chance for any exposed flesh to turn anyone on.
And now, with the reality that sex isn’t guaranteed or scheduleable, I am a sex maniac. I think about it. I dream about it. I vow that when I find a partner, we are going to have sex every night before bed and every morning before we get up. I want to cuddle while we watch TV together while rocking our bodies back and forth in a shared laugh. I promise I won’t be stingy with my girl parts and will not hide them behind a closed closet door. Mostly? I don’t want to just feel love, I want to share love. And in the cheesiest sentence I will ever write, I want something else: I want to make love. I’m not saying, “I want to make love again”, I’m saying, “I’ve never experienced sex as something people do together as an awesomely inadequate substitution for actually just wanting to get everything they are and feel and hope and want and fear and love into the same space as everything the other person feels and hopes and wants and fears and loves.” That. I want that.
Aren’t we a crazy lot. We wax poetic about finding true love, then when we get it, rant and rave on Facebook about how that person is driving us batshit crazy.
I don’t know the answer. Sometimes you don’t know what you have until it’s gone. Like the grass is always greener philosophy, only sadder. Perspective is an enlightening bitch, and maybe that’s the key.
To my married friends, let me be the reminder that once sex isn’t a constant, it becomes really important again. Like, you’ll become like a raging hormonal 17 year old boy without any options. And once selfless and devoted love isn’t a constant, it becomes something worth more than any golden treasure. Life is still awesome without it, but it’s kind of like taking photographs at midday…it’s a little bit harsh and stark. Selfless and devoted love turns life into the golden hour…dreamy, sunflare-y, soft, and magical.
And to me, and all my single friends, I’m reminded that it’s important not to get lost or defined by anything outside myself. That anything, no matter how great it is, will start to annoy me if I forget to take care and prioritize myself. And that it’s good to take some time out and just enjoy the silence of myself.
Love is in many forms. Sex is in many forms. Together, alone, with and without.
It’s messy and crazy and brings out the best and worst in people.
Let’s see what this month in O+U brings!