My First Kiss


It was my first step on a school campus as a legit student. I wore new shoes, a neatly ironed skirt, and a brand-new backpack. When I think back to that moment, I’m mostly struck with the idea that I was trying too hard. But I was homeschooled until that very point, so I didn’t know any better. I walked into WCCS as an eighth grader, as a single (my twin decided to be homeschooled for another year), and fully focused on what mattered: boys. Namely, that I had zero experience with them. Mom explained that they were from the devil–and I wasn’t allowed to date until I was 31–but I was determined to figure it out for myself.

Unluckily, the boys paid little attention to me. I was awkward. Pudgy, bushy eyebrows, and I wore hand-me-downs, so I was in a constant state of looking, well, worn. It wasn’t until Brieanna befriend me that my luck changed. She had a closet filled with clothes, her mother plucked my brows, and she showed me all the cool radio stations to listen to. RnB…definitely RnB…

Shortly into the year, I caught the attention of TJ Lunsford. He had almond shaped eyes and a magnetic smile. He lived with his grandmother, loved basketball, and didn’t seem to care about my clothes. We started talking on the phone after school and then became a couple. Because that’s how it happens. Duh.

TJ + Jasmine = 4ever

Kissing was strictly forbidden at the school, but I knew if we were to going to kiss, it had to be there because my parents didn’t allow me to hang out after the bell rang. At the risk of being suspended, I knew I had to be ready for TJ at any moment. It was all about the strawberry-flavored chapstick. One afternoon, TJ took a break from playing football at lunch and invited me to sit with him. Alone. Behind the dumpster. Hold on…that bears repeating…BEHIND THE DUMPSTER. He was breathing deeply. I like to pretend it was because he was nervous, but I know it was because he’d just scored a touchdown. We spoke for a bit, then he leaned in and kissed me. Soft, firm, experienced. I, on the other hand, looked like I was trying to resuscitate a llama.

A couple weeks later, TJ broke up with me. Michelle was his new girlfriend and they kissed in the bus after our basketball games. And she didn’t make it look so llama-ish. It made me realize my mom was right after all: Boys were from the devil.