Indistinct Mumblings of an Unsound Mind

Growing up in a Christian children’s home, I have always loved music and plays. I was a member in the church choral group, a part-time participant of the church music program, and the audio/visual engineer on-hand. When I finally had the opportunity to join the school drama club, I was more than happy to. Providing valuable information on the technical details made me feel appreciated and I loved that we were performing for peers and friends, instead of a bunch of church-members I didn’t know. The best part, for me, was the enjoyment of being part of a team that was more apt and able to produce challenging content – content that I would not be able to find a place for in a church.

Three months into the drama program, I was pulled aside and taken to the initiation ceremony. I wouldn’t call it hazing – everyone there was about having fun. Initiation was something we all laughed and giggled about. I knew there would be a mild amount of drinking, and whenever there was drinking, getting stoned would follow. We were young and prone to doing less-than-advisable things. Besides, it was supposed to be a relaxed event where everyone got to know each other better. At least, that’s what I understood of it.

The auditorium had just finished jogging in circles around my head for the third time. There was a tall, blonde girl pointing at the speakers hanging by the catwalk and I was on my walkie, telling Meza to get her down before she got hurt. She was swaying back and forth, doing her best imitation of a weeping willow’s branches in the wind.

Wow. We were drunk and had smoked ourselves stupid. I realize that now. The drama teacher was there, but she wasn’t really paying attention. There was just too much going on to take into account all the teenagers there and we were all on our best behavior, lest she figure out we were plastered. Not that she was exactly looking for anything outlandish: After all, this was an afterschool elective club: we were able to come and go as we wished. So I don’t really blame her for not noticing when my best friend, Tara, came by and snatched me up, laughing and joking with me as she duct-taped my hands and arms to my sides. I knew this was coming, but didn’t know exactly what it entailed.

At first, when they put me in the refrigerator box, I was laughing. Laying down flat, on my back, with a pillow under my head and another pillow relieving the pressure beneath my tailbone, Tara was staring, on all fours right above me. Kissing me, she slithered her way out of the box, stopping at the bottom. I wasn’t entirely in the box – my lower half was extending just past the top flaps of the box. The last thing I saw was my best friend smiling and saying, “You’re going to enjoy this.” Then she pushed the flap down so I couldn’t see what was going on and my pants were removed.

Being drunk, I didn’t really care. The next thing I knew, I heard a group of maybe ten people snickering and laughing. I thought, for a brief moment, that they were laughing at my size. I’m not exactly a gifted person in that department. After what seemed like a few minutes, it was obvious they weren’t laughing at me at all, but they were laughing at what was about to happen. I could hear them shouting letters. “B!” “S!” “G!” “He’s definitely a B, Jon.” “I’m for a ‘S’ over here.”  Only later would I find out they were placing bets on my orientation.

After everyone began to quiet down, I heard a girl giggle from down below, by my groin, and the next thing that happened outright surprised me. I was on the receiving end of fellatio. Only, I was a lot younger, so I called it a blowjob. It was glorious, one of the most amazing things I’ve ever experienced. Whether it was the anxiety and the anticipation of not knowing what was going to happen, or they were really that talented, I will never know. Time seemed non-existent, ebbing and flowing in circles of sensuality, marked only by the brief pause between the two pleasuring me. I can’t say how long it lasted, and I’m not going to go into elaborate details.

When all was said and done, they opened the box and pulled me out. I was still rolling from the combination of the carnal activities just done to me and the leftover intoxicants still swimming in my bloodstream. Blinking, I looked up, only to see Tara smiled at me again, pointedly wiping her mouth and asking, “Did you like it?” Of course I did, and they all knew it. It was amazing. They watched me as I orgasmed, then they did it to me again. I was feeling a bit vulnerable, and then she said something that turned my world on end, “It’s ok – I liked it the first time a boy went down on me, too. The real question is, can you tell the difference?”

It took me a moment to comprehend the question. So much was said with so few words. I was angry at the situation and felt betrayed by my best friend. Worse: I am (potentially) gay. What would I tell my pastor? My house-parents? How could I even go to church anymore? Everything that I had been taught was in question here. If it was so enjoyable, and I couldn’t tell the difference between man and woman, why did it matter? God obviously didn’t strike me down.

A thousand things went through my mind in that moment: Thoughts on God, thoughts on friendship, thoughts on relationships and love, questions about my church and myself, and doubts about the morals and lessons I had learned. All these things weighed heavy on me, but the truth was that I liked it. I liked it both times, and that was the one thing that didn’t bother me in the least.

That day I learned more about myself and the world than any other day I have lived. I learned that sexual gratification and love are two different things. I figured out that social boundaries are self-imposed: There is no reason why I couldn’t enjoy myself with another man, and that made me go home and think even deeper: Can I love a man? The next day I awoke with the viewpoint that you can love a person, have sex with a person, have a relationship with a person, and never really care about that person’s gender.

Now that I’m older, I’ve thought about this often. I’ve had many partners: male, female, and otherwise. My life has been fulfilling, and I cannot perceive how much of it I would have missed by holding on to my past prejudices and the behaviors taught to me. I stopped being resentful about the situation about a week afterward. I couldn’t help but laugh at it. It was a monumental experience, and one I’m grateful for. I now approach everything with an open mind, even the most distressing of things. I’m ready to learn and try; and will never be the one set in my ways, unwilling to look at possibilities.

 

Categories: English

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