[[Scene: Madison, a woman in her early 30’s is having lunch in a restaurant with two of her closest friends. They’re in a booth, wine & salads, medium restaurant noises in the background.]]
Sarah: So I guess my mother heard the vibrator sounds and knocked on my bedroom door to tell me to get to sleep, it was a school night after all!
Sarah: Hey, at least she didn’t come in! I still don’t know if she knew exactly what I was up to, but I’m pretty sure she did.
Madison: Jesus, she was an adult Sarah, how could she not know?
Janice: Yeah, your mom didn’t strike me as an idiot Sarah, she knew. My mom sure knew.
Sarah: Did you get caught Janice?
Janice: Did I get caught?!? Oh, you could say that. My mom caught me on the night of my very first orgasm! I’m still surprised to this day that I ever masturbated again after that. She caught me riding my pillow like a mechanical bull. I guess I was in the zone and didn’t realize the noise my bed was making. She came right through my door like she was about to save a life!
Sarah: Oh. My. God. What did you do?
Janice: What could I do? My mom wasn’t an idiot either, she wouldn’t have believed some lame story about a bad dream, or a part in the school play as a cowgirl. I did what anyone my age would have done then, buried myself under the covers and screamed GET OUT!
Sarah: What about you, Madison? It was just you and your dad back then, wasn’t it? God I hope he didn’t catch you!
Madison: Oh no, never caught… But, still…
Both friends: What? What? Tell us!
Madison: My mom died when I was 12, so even at that age I was sure that I was up shit creek, being raised by just my father. Seriously, I remember thinking about how he was going to handle things in my life, like getting my period and having tampons on the grocery list. He was so funny too, he had one of his long-time friends, a woman he’d known for years, give me the ‘talk’ about menstruation. I about died of embarrassment.
Janice: Oh God, no! Really?
Madison: What I didn’t realize until so many years later, was that my dad was the coolest guy I’ve ever known. He raised me as his “kid”. Not as his fragile daughter, not as a pink-poofy girly-girl. Just as his “kid”, period.
Sarah: But, what about when you were getting into your sexuality? How does a single dad handle a daughter who’s starting to wake up sexually? Not that my having a mom helped out a lot in that area, but it had to be a degree worse with just a dad.
Madison: (Laughs) My dad, when I was about 15, brought home one of those jars of that coconut cooking oil, the kind that looks like shortening until it melts. He hands it to me and says ‘Hey, a friend of mine told me this stuff is really great to use on your skin. For dry places like your knees, or elbows.’ He had such a sincere look on his face too, completely parent-like. He totally sold me on it, and I was thinking, oh, okay, I guess I’ll try it. Well, of course it didn’t take me long to start rubbing that oil on many other places on my body, and the whole time I’m thinking how I am the smartest kid on the planet. I even asked him to get me more of it, about a month later, with a completely straight face!
(Laughter from all)
Janice: Oh God, do you think he knew?!?
Madison: Like I said, my dad was pretty cool. I’m convinced that he knew exactly what I’d end up doing with that oil, and yet he never flinched when I wanted more. We both played off the dry skin story for as long as I lived at home. That stuff was on the shopping list as often as tampons were, and he never reacted to either thing. I tried to ask him about it once, just to see if he really did know. He blushed! But, he wouldn’t say a thing, he just pointed to a bird, out the kitchen window and said something about how pretty it was. But, I knew it! And, I couldn’t have loved him more than I did right in that moment.
(Tears & laughter)