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Updated: Jun 27, 2022

I don’t know about you but exploration around sex can be a bit scary. Especially if you have no one around to talk to about it. Luckily, about two years after my divorce, I had a resource. Years earlier, in a growth and development course, a participant bravely stood up in front of us all and declared, “I like sex, really like sex and my family shames me.” I could feel her shaking from my seat. “I am a swinger,” she declared out loud and in public. It was her way of taking back her power.

At the time, there were so many things I didn’t know about sex, let alone awesome sex. I hadn’t dated much, was a virgin until thirty, masturbated infrequently, and had been in a twenty-year monogamous relationship with my husband. Sex was predictable to say the least and later I learned was by definition “sexless” (sex less than ten times per year). We divorced and I was then celibate for two years. Relationship was not in my thoughts and relationship and sex were synonymous in my world then.

Little did I know, years later, I would gingerly approach my swinger friend and say “ya know…I’m not really…ready for a…relationship, but I could…you know…use some good sex. Do you know anyone?” That was sooooo outside my comfort zone and she did!

She set me up and I waited nervously at a restaurant near my house. I didn’t even know what he looked like just that he was probably not a murderer!

He walked in. It was late afternoon so almost no one was in the restaurant (tip: always meet in a public place and always let a friend know the details in case something goes wrong). He sat down and I said something? Not even sure it was coherent. Seeing how nervous I was, he said not to worry. “We’ll have lunch, get to know each other, go back to your place, get naked, and rest will work itself out.” We were lovers for four years until he retired and moved away. I went back to my friend but ultimately had to find my next lover on my own (but that’s another story).

The point is, I had to trust myself and I really didn’t. But per my favorite saying by Lao Tzu “The journey of a thousand miles, begins with a single step.” That advice got me thru my divorce and would serve me now.

My entire world opened up. Closing down my sexuality during my marriage came on so slowly, I didn’t even realize it was happening. But when my sexuality was closed down my creativity and wellbeing. The life force which is sex was extinguished. Life in a sexless marriage was “normal,” and my work was engaging, plus having a great dog. It was just the way life is. NOT!

There is a physical element that is so primal to being human. Maslow put sex right there in importance with food, water, air, and shelter. Sexual energy is powerful and if it isn’t channeled to empower us, it can tear us apart. It’s more than endorphins and oxytocin coursing thru our bloodstream, it is life itself.

I can say my journey has been both scary and exhilarating, and sometimes both at the same time. A friend once told me “A woman can always get sex,” but that was not my experience. There was no guidebook. I forged my own way and learned so very much. I now trust myself, love my body, am a contribution to my lovers and they to me. I’ve laid down judgment around what sex “should” look like and stay present in the moment. What would life be like if we were always present with the people we love?

I’m not advocating any one form of sexual expression. Listen to yourself, your body, your being and ask what it needs to be empowered, enlivened, and healthy. Say what you want aloud and take a single step on your own journey. And be safe.

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