Growing up I was trained to believe that if I’m going to do something, I have to do it perfectly. Today, I’m at the director level in corporate business, so I consistently interact with executive vice presidents and VPs and presidents. And when you walk into a room of suits and you're a pretty woman, there’s always this judgment, this question of “Is she smart enough?” I know it's a distorted view. Nonetheless I always felt I had to prove myself. I had to dress conservatively and speak conservatively. And yet, at the same time, there was this desire to look pretty. I didn't want to constantly have to wear black suits and button-up blouses. Part of me longed to be really creative and fluid and open and not have to disconnect my sense of self as a beautiful woman from being a professional. God forbid, somebody wouldn’t consider me intelligent enough and not take me seriously!
There was this constant struggle and sense of burden and never feeling safe. As a sensitive person, there was no safety. I could feel the eyes and the interest and the judgement and I would have to hide myself while sitting in a boardroom, disconnected from my confidence and full self.
I came to Orgasmic Meditation after listening to a talk by the founder. I was intrigued hearing her talk about feminine sexuality and women becoming empowered in their bodies, feeling the energy, the turn on, at all times, no matter what was happening. I wanted that. I wanted to be that way that no matter what. So, I went to an introduction to OM class in New York.
Because of the way the practice is set up, my first OM felt really safe. It was 15 minutes. There was going to be a beginning, middle and an end. There were certain instructions. I knew what to expect.
At first I couldn't feel much—some pressure and almost a feeling of sharp glass against my clitoris. It definitely wasn't pleasurable, and my partner was also a new stroker. So it felt messy. But it didn't scare me or put me off. I figured if it's a practice, it would just take a few more times to feel turned on and feel a connection with my body and my partner. I wanted to peel off the layers of conditioning that were keeping me from that—the distortions that were keeping me from really enjoying pleasure.
In the beginning, I was more comfortable OMing with people I didn't like, because I didn't have to perform. Deep down inside, I wanted to be perfect, so with people I liked, I worried about my performance and would freeze. I had some shame around my body because I didn't think I was skinny enough. I didn't like my body to some degree and I didn’t have a great relationship with food. Getting past how my body looked and performance fear was a big practice for me. Learning to ask for adjustments and learning to say “Yes” or “No” to something helped me to open up and melt some of that freeze factor inside of me.
It’s taken me a good three years of practice to get past the distorted image I had around perfection. I can’t put my finger on the timing, but my concerns just started to disappear. A wonderful thing happens in the practice. I lie down and I'm uncomfortable and thinking about something, and all of a sudden, instead of worrying about how I look, I actually begin to feel into that place of relaxation. I can feel safe and let my mind drop into the sensation at my clitoris. When I do that, all of a sudden, that sensation turns into something pleasurable and electric and soft and tender. There were times I would cry when my body would open and relax and my mind would stop thinking about how terrible I was.
And then there came the day when I looked in the mirror and said, “Oh, you look great.” All those preconceived notions and those stories and judgments had disappeared. I could look at myself clearly and not through a distorted mirror, and actually love myself.
It took time for me to realize I didn't have to hide who I am. I would walk into a boardroom or some meeting where I would be scared, and then I would think, “What do I have to be afraid of?" That confidence came from my practice, from discovering who I am and letting go of the judgement of who I think I'm supposed to be. Why would I be afraid to speak up in some meeting or judge myself about how I dress?
Training myself to connect with somebody in a very vulnerable space allowed me to feel less uncomfortable with my vulnerability in other spaces in my life, whether it was work or with my parents or my friends. All of a sudden my sexuality just became a part of me. I no longer wear suits. I walk into the room in a classy dress while everyone else is wearing suits, and I'm just as confident and outspoken as I can be. I don't have to prove myself any longer. I have confidence because I know how to connect with myself, no matter where I am. It doesn't matter what I wear,
Five years later there are a lot of things happening in my life. And I have this steady place in my body I can go to no matter what is happening on the outside. And that is the result of the OM practice. When I face a stressful situation, I can just land in that safe space in my body and then deal with the stressful situation without freezing.
OM is a very simple, structured practice where I can find intimacy and connection within myself. And once I have that for myself, the outside world is there to meet me.