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Intimacy Education- A Sex Journal

A Sex Journal by Ohnut Investing in Intimacy- Everett. WA

As an Intimacy Educator, I love to share resources.  I have recently discovered “A Sex Journal for Couples” from Ohnut.

I found the Ohnut Company and its products when I was experiencing difficulties around sex while transitioning from Perimenopause to Menopause.   Like many other women, I struggled with changes in libido, tender to the touch skin, and vaginal dryness.  I also had a severe bout with Post-Menopausal Bleeding.  Six months of struggles landed me in the hospital. 

To get the bleeding and severe pain with cramping to stop, I underwent a D&C (Dilation and curettage) procedure.  The D&C, combined with the preceding six months, left me with no libido and a “don’t touch me there” attitude.  Previously I was very active and happy with my sexual escapes and my high sex drive.  One of the reasons I love offering Intimacy Education is the joy I find in this realm. 

Post-surgery I was happy to let my body rest.  But for how long and then what?  What is my new normal after the 6-month roller-coaster I just went through?  My belief was, “I’m a sex educator. I’m required to have an active sex life.”  Huh? Let’s look at that.  Active?  Well, yes, please. But I needed to follow the advice I give my clients and make it quality, not quantity. 

What quality do I want?  In my journey to define quality is where “A Sex Journal for Couples” came in.  The website description drew me to this journal. Quoted here, “Created by a couple, A Sex Journal for Couples is a shockingly fun (and beautiful) tool for exploring sex and (post-coital) communication! Based on validated research, input from therapists and educators, and real-life experience, this journal includes helpful resources and a simple structure that brings out the explorer that you know is in there.”

It didn’t take much convincing for my husband to go along with my request to reclaim my sexuality. He was just as confused as I was.  As we dove into this journal, I realized what I needed to define, design, and refine, what sex is for me.  It’s helping me to get my libido and sex drive back. 

The biggest tool in this journal is communication.  It creates win-win opportunities.  Helping you have honest conversations around not only the good but the not-so-good experiences as well.

You don’t need to have a physical ailment for this journal to be a success.  All you need is a desire to learn more, be more, and explore more intimacy. 

I Want to Please You…My Way

Please You

I want to please you.   Yes, I do, as do most people.  We are taught to give and giving makes us happy.  After studying the Wheel of Consent™, I have a new understanding of giving and receiving. I am able to step back and look at my actions and the actions of others around giving. 

A couple years ago, I offered to help a friend out during his hip replacement surgery.  I love to cook and thought that I would head to his place to “help” by making ready to eat meals for him in vast amounts, so he didn’t need to cook for a while.   As I am happy in the kitchen busy with my recipes, he keeps interrupting me with requests.  I remember the moment when my inner voice (you know the one) annoyingly said, “Stop interrupting me, I’m busy in here helping you!”    That halted me in my tracks and, I burst into hysterical giggles. I wasn’t in here helping him.  I was in there pleasing myself. He wanted help off the couch, or needed a refill on water to take meds, or… whatever.  I was doing what made me happy.  Because of my Wheel of Consent training, I was able to push that voice away and shelve my pleasure in cooking to go help my friend.  With great attention and joy.  With what he really needed.   Oh, man, talk about pleasure filling me up.  I was doing the best thing for him in this moment.     

As I am now aware of these dynamics, I can see this “I want to please you, my way” happening around me. I have a wonderful client who every month would bring me boxes of candy.  He loves to buy gifts and is so thoughtful.  But he never actually asked me what type of candy I liked.  Sometimes I received my favorites, sometimes the neighbors got my gift.  Armed with my new skills, I shared with him my appreciation of his gifts and let him know that if he really wanted to please me then I wanted Russel Stover’s creams or a box of thin mints.  Now, he is getting what he wants, the pleasure of buying me a gift.  I get what I want, my favorite candy.  Win! Win!

Think about how this might play out on a movie date.  How are you choosing the movie?  Is it what you really want to see, or what you think your date might like? Let’s get even more intimate and talk about pleasing during a sexual experience.  Your lover says to you, “I want to please you.  I want to “A”, then “B” then “C”, giving you the best most explosive orgasm EVER!”  You can see the excitement in their face and hear it in their voice.  They are ready to please you. 

Do you like ABC?  Will ABC lead you to orgasm? This is them being in the kitchen cooking.  They haven’t actually asked you, “What would you like me to do to you?”

So, what happens now?  Do you feign excitement and go along with ABC?  Your partner is trying to please you and you are trying to please them by not hurting their feelings.  Who is getting what they want?   No one.

It’s hard to speak up sometimes.  A healthy relationship allows for you to give your partner the information he/she needs to please you to the best of their ability.  As I shared above, when I knew I was doing the exact thing my friend wanted help with, I was filled with joy.  Because that’s all I really wanted in the first place, was to please him.

I can help you discover more pleasure in giving, in receiving, in relationships, and in conversations with friends and co-workers.  Offering your desire to give to others exactly what they need with an open heart is truly fulfilling.

Back to my Blogs.

Masks

Masks | A Poem By Vicki Tracy

Masks – a poem by Vicki Tracy

Behind my mask
I talk less
My mind has built
This means “hussshhh”

Behind my mask
My frown is hidden
When I’m sad, tired,
Or deep in thought

This is new
I would (mostly) never
Frown out-loud
Smiles only for my public face

Behind their masks
Others are hard to hear
Their words garbled
Too soft for my ears

Behind their masks
Are their fears
How do I know?
It leaks to their eyes

Don’t get too close
Don’t touch me

It’s a bit of a
Deer in the headlights look

Masks hide our fear
Our pain
Our sadness
Our joy

These physical masks
Mandatory now
But look close-
Most people still wear
Their invisible ones.

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Thank you for reading my poetry. Writing is something I enjoy doing.
I have other blogs to check out too!

When I wrote this poem my day started horribly. I received a scathing email from someone with whom I was inquiring about services. I was floored by the angry, all-bold-cap response I had gotten to my request. It shook me up for sure. My lack of knowledge about her services got me a slap in the face. I was just supposed to know?

I think that early morning jolt really put me in the mood to notice more around me. As my day went forward I saw many types of emotions. Besides the blatant anger, I saw blatant thoughtlessness, inattentiveness, and, thankfully, one very attentive person whose smile reacher her eyes.

Were those tell-tale signs always there and I was just noticing more today? So I started looking past the masks, and as you can see, my poem emerged.



Just a small reminder unrelated to this blog post: If you found my website through Sacred Eros, please let me know when making contact, thank you.

BodyTalk and Your Covid Vaccinations

Covid vaccinations – BodyTalk, an energy medicine system, helps you access the natural healing properties we all have inside of us was great support for me while I was getting my Covid-19 vaccinations.   I reached out to a colleague to have sessions before both of my Covid-19 vaccines to help prepare my body for the shot and to ease or diminish all those side effects we are all hearing about. 

Mentally we know that the vaccine is good for us. It is meant to keep us safe and healthy. But our bodies sometimes think of a vaccine as an “invader” and fights against it.  The vaccine is intended to provoke an immune reaction, this is what can cause symptoms.   For some it was minor, but others I have heard from say that it wiped them out for days.  

Having had BodyTalk for myself before each vaccine, all I noticed was a mild soreness in my arm for about 12 hours.  I had NO side effects at all.  These BodyTalk sessions also gave me solace that my body would adjust and accept the vaccine more as a friend than as an invader and I am at peace knowing that I am now fully protected (as much as possible) against Covid-19.  

A Covid-19 Vaccine session is just one way that BodyTalk can support you.  What ails you that a BodyTalk session can invoke your natural healing properties and enhance your life and well-being?

Please refer to the World Health Organization for the latest on Covid-19.

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Thank you for reading about my experience, it is something I appreciate.
I have other blogs to check out too!
Just a small reminder unrelated my this blog post: If you found my website through Sacred Eros or any other platform, please let me know when making contact, thank you.

Covid Vaccinations | Vicki Tracy | Everett Washington | Online

Cuddling and Shame

Cuddling and Shame – Everyone has shame to some degree or another. In The Wisdom of Self-Acceptance by Tara Brach PHD, she discusses the prevalence of shame in our culture relating to “I’m not good enough”.  Do you recognize this pattern in yourself?  For me, my driving mantra is- I’m smart enough to figure this out. Which is what I tell myself to avoid the “I’m not good enough” feeling. I really beat myself up when I struggle to do something new.  Building my healing practice is a good example.  What do I know about business? I punched a time clock and gladly took home that weekly paycheck for three decades. No one ever taught me business skills, so why do I have to prove I’m smart enough to figure this out- alone.  Shame (about my ignorance) was keeping me from asking for help. To avoid feeling not good enough, I struggled and suffered unnecessarily to re-invent the wheel to build my practice.  Eventually my logical brain (with a bit of comedy) kicked in and asked, “Does anyone expect you to perform brain surgery or fly a space shuttle to the moon?”  “Of, course not”, I replied, “I’m not trained for that.”  Ahh.  Lightbulb.  I finally let go of trying to meet my own impossible standard. I released the shame was holding me back.

There is another way that shame also plays a part in my business growth. Would you expect a 50- to 60-year-old man to gush about his cuddle session? I get very few referrals because shame gets in the way.  Many clients share that they don’t tell anyone they come to see me.  That saddens me. But I respect their privacy. It comes down to vulnerability.

How is a cuddle session any different than taking care of yourself when you are sick and making a doctor’s appointment?  Are you ashamed to tell people you need to see a doctor?  Not usually, because we want to get well, to take care of ourselves.  And how often do we hear women bragging on their way out the door at the end of a tough day that they are going to the spa and having a massage. 

These things and cuddling relieve our stress and anxiety. Cuddling can meet our desires for connection by engaging the ingrained neurobiology in our bodies for touch. 

Wouldn’t you be pleased to work a full shift with someone who is stress-free, relaxed and smiling all day?  Hey, Frank, why are you so chipper? “Oh that,” Frank could reply with an even bigger smile, “I had a cuddle session last night.  I feel fantastic!”

So shame affects shame and on and on the cycle goes.   I hope this article can break down the societal barriers and ideas that cuddling is weak, shameful, embarrassing and shows neediness.  No, it doesn’t.  It shows self-care, self-love, and compassion and meets our needs for touch and connection.

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Thank you for reading about cuddling and shame, it is something I appreciate. I truly hope it helped you.
I have other blogs to check out too!
Just a small reminder unrelated my this blog post: If you found my website through Sacred Eros or any other platform, please let me know when making contact, thank you.

Cuddling and Shame | Vicki Tracy | Everett Washington | Online

Touch, Touch and More Touch

Touch – Those of you who know me well know how much I love to touch. It brings me physical pleasure and emotional wellbeing. Here I will define what touch is for me.

Comfort:  Hugs are comfort:  hello hugs, good-bye hugs, I’m-so-happy-for-you hugs, I’m sorry-you’re-sad hugs.  Comfort is also putting a hand on a friend’s shoulder or reaching out to touch them lightly as they share a burden.  As a woman this is easy me for.  Men, you’ll have to share your thoughts.

Nurturing/belonging:  Someone holding me, cuddling me, or caressing me lovingly.  This type of contact sends me the message that you see me, you want to be with me, I belong, I am safe. I feel secure. I too can offer this type of touch to you for the same reasons.

Sexual/sensual: Touching to stimulate pleasure.  I can touch you to stimulate you, I can touch you to stimulate me; you can touch me to stimulate you, you can touch me to stimulate me.   Whee!! Look at all those dynamics! 

Let’s look at how these definitions fit into Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

Touch | Vicki Tracy | Everett Washington USA | Online

I put comfort and nurturing/belonging contact in the basic needs category.  Cuddling and being held by someone I trust, I feel safe and secure.  The warmth and rest that brings me also fit here. Wow!  Looking at it that way makes touch sound very important, and it definitely is to me.  It helps me understand how to define myself. Contact is a main component in making me feel safe, and it encourages me to rest.  

Why are cuddling and cuddle parties so popular?  I think because they are meeting our basic needs.   Skilled cuddlers can develop the ability to feel greatly satisfied in this realm. The partner’s gender does not matter.  What’s important is the feeling you gain from human contact, not to mention the oxytocin high you can achieve.  Sex does not need to be part of cuddling.

This means sensual/sexual touch falls higher up the triangle for me, under psychological needs.  I have in the past ignored nurturing contact for the intensity and pleasure of sex, but it felt like something was missing. I was either unsatisfied, or satisfied in the moment but it faded away quickly, and I craved more.  This is where I believe sexual addiction can start.  We chase what we think we need and what feels really good, but it’s not what we actually need.  You just keep eating the icing off the cake. Sure, it’s good, but there isn’t any substance.

I know some people feel that all types of touch fall into the psychological needs category.  Touch is part of intimate relationships.  Touch can come from friends.  On the pyramid as defined above, where would you put touch?

What about when needs for direct human contact in an intimate encounter are mismatched?  Say you want sensual touch and your partner wants nurturing. Think of this as hiking or traveling with friends and family.  You go at the pace of the slowest or most out-of-shape person. Otherwise you leave behind someone who may need support.  It’s important to get basic needs met first. You may need to stay in nurturing mode for the whole encounter, and maybe the next one too. The slower person is building up stamina, getting in better shape, getting comfortable with you as a partner.  After going slower for a while, your partner may feel ready to meet you at your level.  It’s a tricky spot to navigate.

One of you may still feel unsatisfied. The two of you might negotiate so the person who needs nurturing touch will receive that and the person who wants it to be sensual will receive that, taking a turn for each of you to get what you desire.  I highly recommend just continuing to touch, touch and touch some more and find a good balance for both of you.

Define touch for yourself.  You may come up with the same categories I did or you may find your own.  How important is human contact for you?  How does it fit into your hierarchy? Once you define your categories, practice with just one type of touch.  Set an intention to try to avoid shifts into another category. If you slip up, giggle and laugh and return to the intention. Learn what each type of direct human contact does for you.   Do you feel safe?  Are you calmer?  Are you anxious? Breathless? Deeply satisfied? Craving more?  Notice what you like in which situation.   Practice makes perfect in every realm of learning.  And when it comes to touch, oh boy, can it be fun! Be playful, experiment, and ENJOY!

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Thank you for reading about touch, it is something I appreciate. I truly hope it helped you.
I have other blogs to check out too!
Just a small reminder unrelated my this blog post: If you found my website through Sacred Eros or any other platform, please let me know when making contact, thank you.