Last week I attended a therapeutic pelvic floor massage with my colleague and friend Carly Rae. Even though I had no idea what to expect, knowing how passionate Carly is about her work, I wasn’t nervous at all. I was so relaxed in fact that I didn’t bother to tell her beforehand that I was on the last day of my period. I knew that she’d be okay with whatever my body did, and because of that, I felt really safe.
Safe, relaxed and held are the best words I would use to describe the session. Carly made sure that I was comfortable and exuded a warmth and softness while at the same time extreme confidence in what she was doing. She began by working on my stomach and explained things about my diastasis (separation of my abdominal muscles from pregnancy) that no doctor had told me before.
Moving on to the pelvic floor massage, she began by softly touching my vulva to encourage relaxation. Laying back I felt completely relaxed and was able to fully enjoy her touch. It occurred to me that no other human being had ever touched my vulva in a non sexual – but pleasurable way before. It felt really nice, completely normal, and totally safe.
The internal massage was like nothing I’ve felt before and Carly explained that “It’s a massage from the inside out.” I was struck by how intuitively she moved her fingers inside me – telling me what she was noticing with each move. She could tell exactly where my bike seat rests against my pelvic bones and explained that the tissues in those areas are stuck to the bone. Using what felt like very soft touch and the slightest movements, she massaged those tissues to encourage them to once again separate. At times I felt a discomfort – not pain – and had to breathe into it to manage it.
After the full massage I felt open and fully relaxed. Working with women who’ve experienced birth trauma, sexual abuse, and physical and sexual shame I know that a healthy pelvic floor sets a base for a healthy self. I think it takes a special kind of person to do this deeply personal work and I’m so grateful to Carly for sharing her gift with us.//www.carlyrae.ca