(original photo by Virgin Diaries)
Well it’s been one week since my debut on TLC’s Virgin Diaries and I have been overwhelmed by all of the support I have gotten from doing the show. Thanks to everyone who followed along on Twitter and commented on Facebook to let me know how my story was inspiring to you, or just simply to wish me luck in my search for Mr. Right. I can’t tell you how amazing it was to get all of those messages.
For those of you didn’t see it, you can watch my episode of Virgin Diaries here.
If you saw the episode then you know that admitting my virginity wasn’t something that was easy for me, but you may not know exactly why I decided to “come out” on national television.
The reality of doing reality TV is that, though we did hours of interviews and I laid out my entire story for the producers, very little of that was used on the air. With about twelve minutes of screen time per story on each episode, they can only show so much and I know that some people have been curious as to how I remained a virgin so long (especially since it wasn’t exactly a choice) and why I did Virgin Diaries in the first place.
The answer to those questions is actually best answered in a video. While trying out for the show, one of the things I was asked to do was send an audition video to the network, telling them about who I was, why I was still a virgin and why I wanted to be on the series.
Here’s a link to my audition for TLC’s Virgin Diaries if you’d like to know more.
Now that you have a better idea of how I ended up on the show, and still a virgin at age 41, here are a few of those missing moments that you never got to see on the air.
What you didn’t see from Michelle on the Virgin Diaries
There was a bit more to the “Oops I forgot to have sex” line. I also basically said: “It’s like I’ve been living this great life and doing all these wonderful things, hanging out with friends, breaking into the job I love and….(oops, etc)”
The reason that riding a horse was scary for me and why I said I needed to take it “really slow” – I was in a serious riding accident 10 years ago where I received multiple compound fractures to my arm. This injury was very severe; it required two separate surgeries to heal and nearly a year of recovery where I was in and out of various casts. Me getting on a horse for the show was only the second time I’d been on one since my accident. The first time I tried riding again didn’t go too well, so I was understandably very nervous. I’m happy to say that it went well that time and the horse they gave me to ride for the show was very sweet.
I actually misspoke when talking about my last dating experience. I did not literally throw up. I meant to say I literally ALMOST threw up. Meaning that I felt very, very ill because I was so nervous.
Kelly and I had never met in person before she flew into town to help me with the party. We are co-workers at TV Equals (she and I co-write a Supernatural Chat on the site) and though we’ve become the bestest of friends online and over the phone, that was the first time we saw each other in person.
I truly had no clue that Kelly was a virgin, too. She came to visit me and help me out with the party, but she had no idea what the show was about and there was no way I could know that she herself was keeping the same secret. That was one of those moments you just don’t expect. Also, another thing you didn’t get to see is that after she told me her secret, she also told me what an inspiration I was to her and how she thought I was going to also be an inspiration for lots of girls. Before we knew it, we were both crying. Sadly they cut all that out but it really was a great moment for us as friends.
My makeup artist is also my hairdresser, as well as a very good friend of mine that I’ve known for many years. And her reaction was EXACTLY what I would have expected from her. It was her way of showing me that it wasn’t important to her that I was still a virgin. She’s a laugh riot and I love getting my hair done by her just because it’s an excuse to sit in a chair and chat with her for a couple of hours.
My party was not in fact a formal dinner party, since we didn’t have dinner – just desserts, snacks and drinks. I wanted to have a theme sort of like an old-fashioned coming out party. Hence the reason I was going more for elegance. Originally I was going to have the party in my own backyard but then my friend and her husband offered their lovely place for me to use, which was perfect.
The dress that Kelly is wearing at the party is one that I myself tried on and almost bought to wear. When we realized that, we knew that we were indeed meant to be best friends for life.
They really, really cut up the part where I gave my speech. First of all, once I got started I did not stop, pause or look around self-consciously. Those looks were from before I started – when people were still gathering and I was still feeling nervous. Once I got going, it was very easy to just let the speech take over. Second of all, they cut out a lot of it, including the end. I was determined to end my announcement with a little joke so that it wouldn’t be quite so serious and also so that everyone would know when I was finished. The last thing I said was: “I wanted to admit my virginity so that I could own it, control it and hopefully, someday, lose it.” Third of all, there was NO PAUSE after I said that; nor did everyone look around awkwardly (my friends are all shocked that they were portrayed as being so cold). What you didn’t see is that everyone laughed at my joke and then immediately broke into applause and cheering.
There were a lot of special moments after the speech, including lots of hugs, laughter, chatting, and my friend’s husband (a very well known jazz musician) playing a couple of tunes especially for me on the piano. Having never had a prom or a wedding or any formal gathering just for me before; it was the most special I’d ever felt in my life and I thank my friends so much for making it into a rather magical night.
So there’s my side of the story and I hope that makes things a little clearer for everyone.
Oh and to answer those of you who have asked on Twitter, etc…..yes, I’m still a virgin. But hopefully not forever.