December 15, 2017

Getting Your Sexy Back with Breast Cancer

Barbara Musser, Sexy Saturdays blog, breast cancer, intimacy after breast cancer, breast cancer and sensuality, cancer and sex

Dear Friends,

I’ve just completed an hour-long show with Breast Friends, all about body image and self-esteem, loss of sensation as a result of lumpectomy and radiation or mastectomy, how chemo and hormonal therapies impact libido, how to get your sexy back and much more. We covered many bases in an honest and real conversation. I’m including the link here so that you can listen to the conversation because it was that good! Please feel free to download and listen at your convenience, and feel free to share it. It’s full of solutions to many of the challenges to sexual function that happen as a result of cancer treatments.

Do yourself a favor and educate yourself about your own body and pleasure. Most of us didn’t have good sex education early on and weren’t taught about pleasure. There is so much pleasure to be experienced and cancer is a great opportunity to learn about that.

Sexy After Cancer?

If you have questions or comments, ask them here and I’ll respond as quickly as I can.

 

© 2016 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog reflects my personal opinions. It is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

Sexy Saturdays Swan Song

Barbara Musser, Sexy Saturdays, Sexy After Cancer, breast cancer, breast cancer and intimacy, cancer and sexual health, breast cancer and libido, breast cancer and sexual pleasure

 

 

Sexy Saturdays, Sexy After Cancer, Barbara Musser, breast cancer, breast cancer and intimacy, breast cancer and sexual health, breast cancer and libido, breast cancer and sexual pleasure

 

My Dear Friends,

It’s been almost 2 years since the birth of the Sexy Saturdays blog, nearly 100 posts. I hope that you’ve found value, inspiration and hope in these columns. It’s time that you know how beautiful, desirable and sexy you are! My passion for your joy and pleasure is endless and you have inspired me to explore new possibilities. Of course I have tested every tip and tool to make sure it works ~ I am one grateful, happy, satisfied and awake sexual woman!

TPF is maturing and becoming more focused on their mission of providing financial support and education for those in active breast cancer treatment. This clarity of focus will reflect in the focus of blogs that appear on the site and the focus is more on the financial aspects of the breast cancer experience than on intimacy and sexual health. Sexy Saturdays™ is moving to a new home. This blog will continue on my website www.sexyaftercancer.com/blog. Please click through now to see my inaugural video blog and a bit about the new vision I have.

I hope that you will make the move with me to Sexy After Cancer and continue to read and follow my chronicles for pleasure, intimacy and sexual health. The new video blogs are yet another format to entice you and enhance your pleasure.

It’s been a great adventure writing this blog! There is so much that I have learned and want to share in this emerging conversation about breast cancer and sexual health and intimacy! I also blog for ~

Breast Cancer Wellness Magazine (http://www.breastcancerwellness.org/category/inspire/)

Women’s Survivors Alliance online magazine (http://theplum.org/category/between-the-ears/sex-you-bet/)

Breast Cancer Answers (http://www.breastcanceranswers.com/nurture-sexuality/#.U7xGHqiZ440).

The conversation about breast cancer, intimacy, sexual health, body image and relationships is timely and needed. I’m passionate about providing resources and since I’ve been on this journey personally for 25 years, I understand it.

If you’d like to get in touch with me, work with me, book me for a speaking engagement, or attend a retreat, here’s how ~

Lots of ways to stay connected. I hope you will. There are many different phases to the breast cancer journey and each brings its own joys, challenges and growth opportunities. My belief is that how we feel about ourselves and come into and nourish our inner and outer integrity shapes our journey and experiences. Here’s to you and knowing that you are beautiful, desirable, sexy and that with the ingredients, you can create a happy and satisfying intimate and sexual life after breast cancer.

© 2014 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

A Sexy Summer Solstice Ritual

Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer, Sexy Saturdays, breast cancer, breast cancer and intimacy, breast cancer and sexuality, sexual healing after breast cancer

 

 

 

Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer, Sexy Saturdays, breast cancer, breast cancer and intimacy, breast cancer and sexual health, intimacy and sexuality and cancer, breast cancer and eroticism, breast cancer and self love

Today is the Summer Solstice ~ the day with the longest hours of daylight in the year. There are celebrations of many types happening around the world to celebrate the change in the seasons. Summer officially begins today.

I suggest a Sexy Summer Solstice Ritual for you to celebrate you as a sexy and desirable woman. It all begins with your beliefs about yourself, and what better time to explore and create some powerful and positive beliefs about yourself? Here are some ideas to inspire you to create your own special ceremony or ritual ~

  • Prepare some supplies for your ceremony. A blanket, some fresh flowers or flower petals, a sacred object that reminds you of intimacy and sensuality, some sensual poetry or other writing, your journal, some music, a pillow to sit on, anything else that intuitively feels right to you to bring along.
  • Pick a beautiful place in nature that feels beautiful and sensual to you ~ a glad in a park, a rose garden, a secluded swimming hole, whatever appeals to you.
  • Take your supplies to your place and create a sacred space for your ritual ~ lay out the blanket and other items you have brought as if you are creating an outdoor altar to honor a sacred goddess. You are and it’s you!
  • Relax in your sacred space and invite any unseen beings to join you for the ritual ~ angels, guides, teachers, ancestors, goddesses or other deities, fairies, whatever and whoever pops into your mind.
  • Sit in the center of the sacred space and feel what it feels like to be in a beautiful sanctuary created to honor you and your sensuality. Breathe and drink in all the sensations of the experience.
  • Gently close your eyes and meditate or contemplate your beauty and desirability as a sensual and sexual woman. Ask for visions, thoughts or wisdom to inspire you in this and wait for what comes. You might have feelings, thoughts, images or other sensations. Drink it all in and know that what you are receiving is just right for you.
  • Write down any inspirations or ideas in your journal so that you can remember these gifts. If you brought something to read, read it and let it inspire you further.
  • Write down some thoughts about beauty, sensuality and sexuality ~ simply begin writing and let the words flow onto the page without editing or even thinking about what’s coming out. Just let it flow.
  • Close your eyes again and create a vision of yourself as a beautiful, sensual, sexual woman ~ who is content, satisfied and happy with life and love. Write the vision in your journal and if there is an image, draw it in your journal. This is your inner wisdom guiding you.
  • Spend as much time in your sanctuary as feels right to you. When you feel complete with the ritual, thank all the beings who have been here with you, thank your inner wise woman and thank the beauty of nature that surrounds you. Slowly and mindfully pack up your things and know that you can return here any time you wish, whether in person or in your thoughts.
  • Allow this special time to nourish those deepest places in you that are thirsty for beauty, sensuality and love. Know that you are beautiful, lovable, desirable and sensual.

If you are moved to share anything about your ritual with us, please do as a way of honoring yourself and of sharing your gifts with others so that we can all benefit.

© 2014 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

25 Years of Great Sexual Health After Breast Cancer!

Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer, Sexy Saturdays, breast cancer, breast cancer and sexuality, sex after breast cancer, breast cancer and intimacy

 

 

Sexy After Cancer, Barbara Musser, breast cancer, breast cancer and sexuality, intimacy and breast cancer, cancer and sexual health, sexy saturdays

This week was my 25 year anniversary of my breast cancer diagnosis ~ my Silver Jubilee! I’ve been reflecting on the journey, especially my intimate and sexual journey. It’s been quite and adventure with lots of twists and turns, ups and downs, and I’d like to share some of the things I’ve learned along the way ~

  • The resources, strength and courage are all inside and it’s a matter of exploring the inner realms to bring them to the surface and integrate them. This is an ongoing exploration because as time passes things continue to evolve and grow. Courage begets courage; vulnerability enhances the capacity for more vulnerability.
  • It’s not a straight line to the destination, but it’s about enjoying and learning form the journey. A sense of curiosity, humor and creativity smooth the bumps, which continue to be in the path.
  • Feminine grace is innate and has nothing to do with physical appearance or age. We are all born with this and life covers it up. Being quiet and still and calling it forth, reveals it, then it can be tended like a beautiful flower in the garden of you.
  • Cancer can open portals into completely new experiences of intimacy, sensuality and sexuality. There are many more possibilities beyond penetrative genital sex and fluid exchange that are fun, pleasurable and orgasmic.
  • Defining beauty and sexiness on my terms, rather than the cultural mores, is liberating and empowering and magnetically attractive.
  • Open and honest communication about desires, needs and pleasure is highly intimate and erotic.
  • Trusting my wisdom, heart and body brings me into alignment and integrity inside and out and that is sexy.
  • I have a more satisfying and nourishing intimate and sexual life than I ever dreamed of before my cancer diagnosis.

My wish for you is that you know how beautiful, desirable, sensual and sexy you can be and that you join me on this journey of discovery. I have created a new online course called “You Are So Beautiful” to help you on this journey. Here’s a link to learn more about it ~ https://www.sexyaftercancer.com/you-are-so-beautiful-course/. I hope you give yourself this gift!

Here’s to you, Beauty.

© 2014 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

May Day

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Sexy After Cancer, Barbara Musser, Sexy Saturdays, spring love rituals and cancer, breast cacncer, cancer and sexula health, cancer and intimacy, intimacy after breast cancer, fertility and breast cancer

When I was in my last year of college, I went home to visit my parents. I sat in my mother’s kitchen that morning, drinking tea and chatting with her as she cooked something wonderful. What a treat to be home, do some laundry and eat some good food!

The phone rang. I was sitting beside it so I answered.

“Hello?”

“Hooray, hooray, the first of May. Outdoor fu…ing starts today!” said a deep male voice.

“Uh, excuse me?” I said in a shocked voice, thinking it was a crank call.

“Ruth…?”

“No, this is Barbara.”

“Barbie?!?  Let me talk to your mother please.”

Shocked, I handed the phone to my mother and left the room. She later told me that she and my Dad were friends with another couple, and this was their annual late spring joke. I remember being horrified at the idea of my parents doing the deed. Perhaps this was the beginning of why I later became a sex educator.

Every year after that, it was a playful thing to call Mom or Dad and say the rhyme and we’d all laugh. As my parents divorced and went their separate ways, I continued the tradition. Dad is now nearly 90 and the other day on the first of May I called him and said the rhyme. He laughed and said he still loves thinking of the spring mating season.

The urge to mate is in all of us, no matter our age or physical situation. Even with breast cancer and the impact of treatments on our bodies, hearts and minds, our bodies still contain this ancient primal urge. You may not think so, but it’s there, even if it’s gone to sleep.

This May Day weekend remember the urge to mate. Recall it in your mind and let yourself daydream about it. Perhaps it feels like a distant memory, perhaps it’s present in this moment. However you experience it, give yourself over to the idea. May Day, the May Pole, Beltane, and ancient Celtic fertility rites were all celebrations and rituals to honor the fertility of the earth and create a bountiful crop. It’s said that on May Day, men and women went out into the fields in the moonlight and made love to make the earth more fertile.

How can you nourish fertility in your life? It doesn’t need to be about reproductive fertility. Perhaps there’s something you want to gestate and birth related to your intimate and sexual health. What might that be?

A wonderful way to encourage intimate and sexual health to grow is to imagine and visualize yourself being intimate and sexual, however you define them. In your mind’s eye see yourself engaged in intimate activities; see yourself making love, kissing, or whatever brings you pleasure. If you allow yourself to go fully into the images, you will experience pleasure. The brain doesn’t distinguish between what we’re actually experiencing and what we’re thinking. This is the beauty of imagery and visualization. Let this be a part of your journey of breast cancer and sexual health!

Hooray, hooray, the first of May. May your pleasure start today!

 

© 2014 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

Adornment and Pleasure

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Clothing and adornment can bring great pleasure if the purpose is to please yourself and love yourself. Most of us don’t think this way when we dress for the day or evening. We may take a quick look in the mirror and check to see if there are wrinkles or if we look fat ~ usually with a critical eye.

What if you dress to please yourself, knowing that different textures, colors and styles can create pleasure? If you did, how would you dress? Would you wear make-up and jewelry?

For today, choose to adorn you for you, as if you knew that you were all that matters. The truth is that you are all that matters. How you feel about you is what creates how you experience life. Try on the belief that you are beautiful and deserve to experience pleasure in all forms, including what you put on your body.

From this perspective, look in your closet and see what draws your attention. Put it on and see notice how you feel… does your skin like what you’ve chosen? How do you look to the loving you? What emotions are you feeling? Are you having fun?

Do you want to further adorn your body with accessories, jewelry or make-up? If so, do what pleases you. How do you want to style your hair? What shoes?

Once you’re pleased with how you feel and look, take yourself out for tea. Go on a date with you. Go to a place that brings you pleasure. Maybe there’s a local tearoom that you like. Go there. Or wherever strikes your fancy.

Wherever you choose to go, go with pleasure in mind. Choose a drink that brings you pleasure as you look at it, taste it and consume it.

Something as simple as pleasing yourself ~ who knew? As you sip your drink, let your mind wander to what else will bring you pleasure. You may be surprised as what comes to mind. Pay attention, because the whole idea is pleasure, my dear!

I’d love to hear what brings you pleasure. Please share with us so that we can all celebrate your pleasure and get more ideas for our own pleasure!

© 2014 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

Erotic Movement and Flow

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Do you feel self-conscious about your body and how it moves? Are you awkward in your own skin? Would you like to feel more freedom in your body? More pleasure?

Sometimes movement brings great pleasure. For example, I love taking a brisk walk in a beautiful place, breathing deeply and feeling the motion of my body as I feel the earth under my feet, the sun on my skin and the kiss of the breeze on my cheek. I feel in flow with the earth at such times. That flow brings me great pleasure and freedom.

Here’s another movement practice for an experiment ~

Find some music that has a beat that appeals to your body, music that has you want to get up and move. It might be slow and sensual, have a dance beat, or a primal beat. Play the music loud and stand in the middle of the room. Close your eyes and give yourself to the music. As you stand and breathe, begin to feel the music in your cells and bones. Bring your awareness into your body and let it begin to move to the music. See if you can become one with the music, merging into the sounds and flow and rhythms. Let your physical rhythm be that of the music.

If you think you can’t dance, don’t think of this as dance. It’s a flow, a movement meditation to the sounds and energy of the music. Let yourself go, breathe, move and have fun.

You may find that you want to keep going after the song ends. If so, great, keep going. If you’ve had enough, sit and relax. Either way, when you stop moving, sit with your eyes closed and scan your body. Notice your breathing. Is it rapid, deep and full or shallow? How does your body feel? Tingly? Loose? Tight? Relaxed? Excited? Vibrating? Pay attention to what’s happening and how it feels.

Our bodies want to move. Belly dancing was created as a way to ease the pain of childbirth and to bring women pleasure. There are forms of dance called ecstatic dance that are designed as meditations and move through different beats and rhythms. For some, being in the body in this way is a great pleasure and release. Try it and see what it is for you.

Please share your experiences with us so that we can all learn together.

© 2014 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

The Body Electric and Erotic

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Did you have fun with a flower or chocolate or something else last week? I hope so and I hope that you’re beginning to experience little flickers (or big waves) of erotic energy. It’s so fascinating when we slow down and open up, to see what pleasures await us.

Do you know that your skin is your largest organ? It is, and it’s filled with countless nerve endings, which provide so much input. You probably already know some ways that this has changed in your body as a result of cancer treatments. Now you may have new or no sensation around scars or surgical sites, neuropathy, different sensations around hair loss and regrowth, to mention a few.

Are you dissociated from your body? It can happen easily as a coping strategy while going through treatment. Added to the dissociation that many women experience sexually, it can feel like there’s nobody home inside your body!

Going through life physically absent is one way, and I don’t recommend it. There’s much sensation and pleasure for us in our bodies and many ways to access these.

This week the invitation is to focus on the sensations in your skin. Take some time to stroke your skin with various types of touch ~ using only the pads on your fingertips very lightly, gently raking your skin with your fingernails, little taps on your skin to wake it up, deeper circular motions like massage, and any others that occur to you to try. Experiment with parts of your body that aren’t often touched including the backs of your knees, your elbows, your calves, and so on.

As you explore your skin, focus your awareness and attention on where the touch is happening and pay attention to the sensations. How does it feel? Do you feel pleasure both with your fingers or hands as well as the places being touched? Do you like touching or being touched better or are they the same? What helps you feel more present inside yourself? What do you love?

Getting to know your skin through touch and pleasure can be surprising. Notice what, if anything, surprises you and what you are learning about you. Please share it with us so that we can learn from you.

© 2014 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

Pleasure in Your Body

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Today is about connecting with your body in new ways.  Are you up for discovering some new sensual and erotic sensations? I hope you say yes!

Begin by opening to the possibility of experiencing pleasure through all of your physical senses ~ touch, sight, sound, taste and smell. I suggest that you literally use your entire body and all your senses to experience pleasure.

Let’s do a sensing experiment. For the experiment we’ll explore a flower. Go to a florist and drink in all the sensory input ~ what do you see? How does it smell? How does your skin feel? What do you hear? Any taste sensations? Walk around the shop and let your senses guide you.

Choose a flower or two to take home for the remainder of the experiment. Ask the florist to wrap it in some beautiful paper and ribbon, as if you were buying a gift for your beloved ~ you are!

When you get home and unwrap the flower, spend some time with it. Begin by looking at the flower ~ what color is it? What type of flower did you choose? Is it beautiful? Take in as many visual aspects of the flower as you can and notice your experience.

Next, smell the flower. Wave it gently under your nose and inhale the perfume. Is it sweet? Clean? Pungent? Earthy?

Gently stroke your cheek with the flower ~ how does it feel? Velvety? Soft? Fuzzy? Smooth? Rough? Do the petals feel different than a leaf or the stem? Explore the feel of the flower in as many ways as occur to you.

Taste the flower! Is it sweet? Spicy? Bitter? Moist? Dry? Take a petal in your mouth and chew it gently. What happens when you do that? Do you salivate? Does the scent affect the taste?

Wave the flower near your ears. Is there a sound as it moves through the air?

Take a petal and crush it between your fingers. What does that feel like? Is a scent released that is different from before? What does it sound like?

What is your experience when you involve all your senses? Does your body feel more alive? Are you in your body or have you checked out? Does this seem silly or pointless? Is it sensual? Erotic? Flowers are the reproductive part of plants. Does knowing this affect your experience in any way?

Can you imagine involving all your senses as you explore your own body? What if you explored your hand in this way, using sight, smell, touch, taste and sound? Try it and see what happens, what you experience.

One aspect of eroticism is slowing things down. This allows you to be fully present with whatever you are experiencing. Sometimes we go so quickly that a day can pass by in a blur. What if you spent 5 minutes a day on being present, fully present?

Imagine doing this same experiment with chocolate, or a bubble bath? Please share your experiences with us!

© 2014 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.

For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.

You are Your Lifetime Lover

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It’s February and the subject is love.  We’re awash in Hallmark moments about romance, hearts and flowers and little candy kisses with sweet messages.  Let’s take a deeper look at love, at self-love.

The truth is that love begins and ends with you and your relationship with yourself. You are your primary partner. How you feel about you shapes how you receive and give love. Sometimes we think that we’ll love ourselves when we know others love us. If we don’t feel loved, it’s easy to think that we’re unlovable and that only love from others can fill that emptiness. This is backwards. How we feel about ourselves is what we transmit to the world. When you are in love with you and loving you, you radiate love and it’s irresistible. You are irresistible.

For the month of February, my invitation and challenge is to love yourself fully, to believe that you are adorable, lovable and irresistible. Imagine what your life would be like if you felt totally loved all the time? This is the gift I’m inviting you to give to you.

Each day this month, explore a way to love yourself. Open your heart to you the way you open to the one/s you love most. Be generous with your love because you deserve to be adored. At first this may feel silly or awkward. Stick with it and be creative. Here are a few ideas to get you started ~

  • Write yourself a love letter. Tell yourself all the things you appreciate and love about yourself. Write it on beautiful stationery or a card and mail it. Hint: you can do this more than once and perhaps you’ll send you a Valentine!
  • Take yourself out on a date. Dress up for you so that you feel beautiful and go out for coffee, a movie, dinner or for a walk in a beautiful place.
  • Meditate on love. What does love mean to you? How do you know when you are loved? How can you be more loving with you? Open to receive what comes to you as you sit and contemplate these questions and any others than inspire you.
  • Buy yourself some gorgeous flowers, or send them to yourself. Include a love note with the flowers and when you look at them, remember how much you love you.
  • Each time you see your face in a mirror say “I love you” out loud.

Keep a love journal and each day write about your love practice and exploration for that day ~ what you did, how it felt and what you’re learning about loving you. Keep the journal in a special place and read it often to remind you of your love for you.

Please share some of the ways you are loving you so that we can be inspired by each other!

© 2014 by Barbara Musser, Sexy After Cancer.
For more resources, go to SexyAfterCancer.com

This blog is not meant to serve as medical advice of any kind. Any questions about your health and sexuality should be directed to a licensed physician or therapist. Any opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.