I’ve always thought of February as the month of love, whether romantic or platonic. So, this seems like a good time to discuss the importance of maintaining a lustful and passionate life.
For the most part we don’t change as we age, but many of our characteristics do become more magnified. I suppose I’ve always been passionate and lustful about life. My interest in intimacy began when I was about 18-years-old, and our family physician handed me a copy of Rollo May’s Love and Will. “You know it’s time you learned about love and lust. This book will come in very handy for you, now and through your adulthood.”
In the car on the way home while my mother was driving, I cracked the book open. I read the first page about five times and still had no idea what May was talking about. I wondered if something was wrong with me for not understanding, but was too embarrassed to ask my mother. Her only comment was, “Yes. That’s a great book.” End of conversation.
It sort of reminded me of the day I turned 12 when she came into my room and handed me a little pink pamphlet called, Your Secret Body. “This is all you will need to know about your transition into womanhood,” she said and walked out.
Earlier on, as a young child, I was very curious about sensuality and played “doctor” in our suburban basement with a few friends. We took turns discovering what it meant to be aroused. Together we giggled and experimented. Having my first orgasm felt as if I had transcended universes. I wanted that feeling over and over again.
During adolescence, I often read sexy books. I remember hiding Jacqueline Susann’s Valley of the Dolls under my pillow. I lost my virginity with my junior high school boyfriend. One Friday night, his parents were out at a party, and he invited me over to watch TV.
I don’t remember the show, but I do remember what it was like losing my virginity and how comfortable my boyfriend made me feel. Although it was a mutual deflowering, he was still very confident. The sight of blood was scary however, and even more daunting was deciding what to do with the stained sheets.
When I arrived home that evening, my mother asked me if I had a good time. I smiled and said, “Yes, I did.” When she asked me what show we watched, I said I couldn’t recall the name of the movie. “I’m tired,” I said, and scurried up to my room to write about the experience in my journal.
I met my husband in 1972. I lived in New York, and he lived in Canada. For five years we had a long-distance love affair that involved writing affectionate letters. We read and compared our readings of French writers such as Flaubert, Baudelaire, and Balzac.
Our letters were inspired by our readings and were filled with lustful thoughts and longings. A few years down the road, I became inspired by the diarist and erotic writer Anais Nin, who taught me that open communication, intimacy, and lust were all important reasons for living.
We got married when I was 23. My father-in-law, who had lived in France for many years, bought us a copy of The Joy of Sex. We devoured the book during our early married years together. It helped us achieve open, honest communication, and the ability to make our desires and needs known to each other. It accentuated all the positive aspects of our sex life.
My in-laws practiced what they preached. Whenever we visited, they’d close their bedroom door each afternoon at four. It was no secret what they were up to and made us contemplate if we would be like that with our children.
As it turns out, children do subconsciously mimic the behaviors of their parents. I’m now the mother of three adult children, but when they were younger, my husband and I did the same as his parents.
Now in my 60s, I continue to feel lust for life and intimacy. I realize that I’ve always needed lust in my life, and I hope to be lustful for as long as I live. That transcendent feeling I had during my very first orgasm more than 50 years ago is not a feeling I ever want to lose.
As a poet, some years ago I published my fifth poetry book, Lust. Many of my readers responded, writing that they bought the book as a gift for their lover, husband, or partner. Some even opted for the audio version of actress Kate Udall reading my poetry in her warm, sultry voice.
For some, it stimulated interesting conversations about priorities and what brings joy. A number of readers used it as a way to turn each other on. Who knows, it might inspire some of your own poetry. Or, it could make a great Valentine’s Day gift for someone you love.
What is the state of your lust life these days? When did you first experience a connection between love and lust? Are you lustful for more of what life’s got to offer?
Tags Sex After 60