Just over three years ago I flew to NYC to attend my first Bodysex workshop. At that time I was disconnected with myself sexually, afraid to cry in front of others, 10lbs skinnier and hated my body. I was terrified of my “ugliness” being seen and at the same time desperate for someone to see it and love me anyways. I wasn’t sure what I’d get from doing something that scared me so much, but I did know that I wanted to find a way through all of my insecurities and feel like I’m enough as me.
For a year before the workshop I’d been on an inner journey — trying to figure out who I was and where I fit into my different roles as mother and wife. So much of my time and energy was spent pleasing others and care taking. Somewhere along the line my self worth had become tied up in other peoples opinions of me and in seeking validation from them.
Today I am on a plane flying back home from NYC having just attended a Bodysex retreat with women from around the world, getting certification to lead their own groups. All of these women have done at least one Bodysex workshop and some, like me, already lead their own groups.
As I watched these other women throughout the weekend — and thought of how they live their lives at home as nurses, make up artists, healers, teachers, professors, realtors, lawyers, sexologists, labourers, mothers, wives and daughters — I saw me. I saw me in the way they connected to themselves sexually — masturbating side by side in a variety of positions, using vibrators, dildos and hands — like it was the most natural thing in the world. I saw me as I witnessed them encouraging each other to make whatever sound they needed to, or take as much time as needed to reach orgasm. I saw me in the tears that fell without shame —tears that represented understanding, pride, honour, respect, healing, joy, freedom and pleasure. I saw myself in all the different body types and characteristics — curves, rolls, stretch marks, freckles, strength and softness. I saw myself in the unapologetic way each woman carried her beautiful body — like they are living life from the inside out instead of the other way around. Embodied. Shoulders back. Tits out. Hips swaying.
Feeling so seen and so free with women, of whom most I had never met, I couldn’t help but feel such huge respect and awe for the common denominator we all share. Bodysex. A conscious and intentional circle of women sharing in both shame and pleasure. Naked, vulnerable and brave in a space where we don’t need to be anything other than who we are and we celebrate that.
These past three years have been almost like a continual birthing process for me with each day and each new experience that I choose for myself bringing me deeper into me. I’d be lying if I said it hasn’t been incredibly hard and at times painful to come to terms with all of my discoveries. I don’t have all the answers or even half of them. Sometimes I still feel insecure about my body and sometimes my orgasms are just meh. Most of the time however, I feel orgasmic, alive, free, empowered and excited for all of the discoveries, pleasures and joys yet to come my way. I feel at home in my body as it is and with the safety of feeling at home comes a deep trust that I’ll be okay no matter what. I am enough.
Thank you Betty, Carlin, and all of my Bodysex sisters for allowing me to see you, so that I could be reminded of what I see in me.
Fall 2017 Bodysex Workshop/Retreat Date
I’m so excited to announce these upcoming Bodysex retreat dates including a whole new Advanced retreat! Details can be found under “services” but if you have any questions at all please don’t hesitate to contact me. I’d love to share the circle with you. <3
This retreat is open to all Orgasmic Women looking to journey deeper into self awareness, pleasure and orgasm
Date: Nov. 16th 7pm – Nov. 19th 1pm (3 nights)
All inclusive. Includes a signed copy of Betty Dodson’s book “Sex For One.”
Participants required to have previously attended one Betty Dodson Certified Bodysex workshop.
Registration closing date October 15th in order to give all registrees adequate time to complete their self awareness homework before the retreat.
Register on my website here or email firstname.lastname@example.org for all enquiries.
Last week I woke up to the sight of my 7 year old daughter laying beside me, wrapped in a quilt made by one of my Bodysex sisters. She had made the quilt for me last year in exchange for a friend of hers to attend one of my Bodysex retreats. Since then the quilt has mostly been used in my counselling office or at my retreats — providing warmth and comfort to women when they need it.
Seeing her wrapped in such a perfect symbol of sisterhood, I couldn’t help but think of the trickle effect that Bodysex has, not only on the women attending — but on the next generation of children. Even if they never attend a workshop, the very structure and concept of Bodysex is one we rarely see examples of in today’s culture. Women supporting other women — absent of competition. Real naked bodies — not on display, but simply being. Honest, vulnerable sharing of our most hidden stories, greatest fantasies and everything in between. Shared celebration of self pleasure as our fundamental birthright. And the healing experience of non sexual, loving touch from women who actually SEE us.
Tucking the quilt in tighter I continued to watch her, hoping that her little body would soak in some of the power of the collective stories and pleasures that the quilt holds. That as she grows and becomes a woman herself she will find acceptance in her body, love of self, enjoyment of pleasure and true sisterhood.
I love you Naya <3
A few days ago my 7 year old daughter and I were biking along the river bank — enjoying the sunshine — and trying to spot gophers and geese.
“Mama” she said, “let’s look for houses that look the comfiest.”
Smiling at this idea I turned my eyes away from the river – towards the houses on the other side, and began looking for the comfy ones. The river bank is full of beautiful homes and it didn’t take me long to find some, but she was already pointing to her own picks. Her choices, although fairly cute, all had something about them that made them not necessarily “nice” to look at.
Curious about this I asked her “What does a comfy house look like?”
“Well “ she said, “it’s not perfect, but it’s nice. It’s really nice cause it feels nice to live in. Like our house.”
Thinking about this I paid attention to the ones she chose and this is what I saw…
Children’s bikes and toys strewn all over the walkway and front yard of a little character home. A cedar house that looked years over due for a restain, and a plain house thats only identifying feature was a person sitting on the front deck reading.
“That one looks just like ours mama.” she said.
My initial reaction was to say that I didn’t think that house looked anything like ours except that it was tiny, but I stopped the words before they came out of my mouth. She isn’t looking for perfection I thought, she’s looking for a place she’d “feel nice to live in.”
As we biked on I thought about her view of what’s nice and comfy and how in her innocence it has nothing to do with perfection at all. I then thought about my own home and how there are chips in the paint and gaps between the hard wood in the floor. It’s small and tight – like a hug from someone who really cares about you. It’s warm inside and smells like home made cooking and sometimes stinky dog. “It’s not perfect, but it’s nice.”
Then I thought of my body — the other home that I live in and how just that morning in the shower I lovingly washed the parts that maybe aren’t as nice to look at. Or are they? The elaborate spiral pattern on my stomach – stretched from the 4 babies carried in it. It’s got a different texture than the rest of my skin and no matter how hard I exercise, it can’t tighten back to the way it used to be. It’s imperfect but it’s soft and warm to touch, and it’s the place my daughter reaches her little hands for when she wants to cuddle.
I thought of how both my home and my body respond to loving care – A fresh coat of paint or good, healthy food. And how sometimes loving care means eating big juicy burgers or wrestling in the living room.
“It’s really nice cause it feels nice to live in.”
According to Senaya it seems that the comfiest homes are the ones that tell a story on the outside, of the joys and the sorrows of the owners on the inside. From my tiny library out front, to my window trim that needs repainting. From the loose skin on my belly to my c-section scar. These things make me and my home comfy to her and – I like to think – to anyone else who loves me. My body isn’t perfect, but it’s nice. It’s really nice because it feels nice to live in….
**** Thank you to my wise little girl Senaya for teaching me to look at my comfy body/home in a new way.
Body and Mind
This workshop is designed to help participants explore how mainstream culture and media aim to distort our sense of what is normal and healthy regarding our bodies. Along with this we will look at our past and present feelings about our bodies, and the influence they have on our self concept and interpersonal relationships.
This is a group workshop open to anyone and everyone who wants to gain self acceptance and self compassion, so that together we can be part of finding a solution to this cultural epidemic of body shaming.
Dates: April 23rd
Location: 58 – 158 2nd Avenue North, Saskatoon
Cost: $50/person due via etransfer or paypal upon registration. Paypal payments will be charged $5
Max 10 participants
****This workshop will include viewing of the documentary “Embrace.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w8N_arduKL4
****You will not be required or asked to share intimate details of your sex life. The workshop will touch on how our body image affects our intimacy, however the focus will be on body image.