December 15, 2017

Total Eclipse of the Heart

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

Astrologically we are in a period of lots of action ~ eclipses, full moon, the equinox and Mercury retrograde, to name a few. During the season of eclipses, things can change in big ways, rapidly. If you knew you could wave a magic wand and change something big about your heart and your capacity to love, what would you change? How can you love you more? How can  you bring more love to the world?

Our experience of love blossoms from our love relationship with ourselves. How do you love you? Are you madly in love with you? Do you have a crush on you? Do you know how gorgeous and lovable you are? If  you aren’t having these experiences, what would it take for you to have them? Maybe, just maybe, it starts with deciding that you do. And then acting as if it’s true. Don’t believe me? I invite you to try it on and see what happens. Let your heart shift completely in the eclipse! And here’s a poem to inspire you.
“And You Shall Love”

do you love yourself?

yes, but
do you love yourself?
not like a poor relation, with an
effort to be kind.  being good about it.

do you love yourself
like the most hopeless crush you ever had?
the day you wrote his initials
all over your notebook:
mr. and mrs.  glowingly divine?

do you love yourself like
Rumi loved his God?
do you love yourself stumbling
and giddy, burbling visions of wine-drunk
spiritual ecstasies?

do you love yourself
so hard it hurts to breathe,
so true the very thought of losing you
makes you ache and cry?

do you love yourself
with dirty fingernails
and all you’ve got,
hanging on, for dear life?

do you love yourself as you rise up,
as you lie down, and as you go about your way?

would you die,
if you didn’t have you?

have you woken, yet,
from that awful dream,
the recursive bargain of self-hate
you made to stay alive?
is this the deal-breaker?

the angel abides
until one day
your will abides no more:
from out of nowhere you could name
the unleashed heart of fire ascends
and you are joined.

as full of scars
as grace.

“beloved”
a voice is heard;
the voice is yours.

(this time it is the angel’s turn
to laugh; even God’s hidden name
prances and smiles)

Dvorah Simon

 

© 2015 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.

Love, Grief, Loss and Intimacy

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

Loss and grief are inevitable in life. Stephen Jenkinson says that we human beings are maintained by the death of other living things. I’m in the midst of this experience following the death of my beloved Daddy-O 5 weeks ago. I think it’s also true of the deaths and losses we experience on the cancer journey ~ the death of the myth of our immortality, loss of our bodies as they were previously, and the loss of innocence.

As I contemplate my grief being composted into something more life-loving, and letting grief have its way with me, I’m opening more and more into other aspects of love. A broken heart is an open heart. My heart is opening to me in new ways, tenderly and fiercely. I realize that all that really matters is love and opening to love again and again.

This video shares a practice I’m doing and I offer it as inspiration to you on your journey of love and intimacy, which begins with loving you…

As always, I welcome your thoughts and feedback. Until next time, I wish you more love, more wonder and more gratitude for this wild and precious life.

© 2015 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.

Love Your Breasts Now

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

Surgery and treatments for breast cancer can radically alter how our breasts look and feel. Although the signs may not be so visible, we feel different inside and it’s easy to question our beauty and desirability. Loss of sensation in our breasts or loss of our breasts can cause many feelings and sometimes, separation from our bodies.

This next step toward pleasure and intimacy is about continuing the mirror practices, this time with our naked breasts. Accepting, forgiving, making peace with and loving our breasts is this step. Have a look at this video for some tips and practices on how to accomplish this. It can be a tender and raw journey so please call on your compassion and love.

 

I love your comments and feedback, so please let me know if this tool is useful for you.

© 2015 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.

Be Your Own Best Valentine Today and Every Day!

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

Beyond the Hallmark Holiday that Valentine’s Day is, this is an opportunity to explore loving yourself more deeply. We all want to feel more loved more of the time, so let today inspire you to begin that journey. How do you like to be loved? Answer this question and then give that love to YOU! No one else can love you like you can because you know exactly what you want and need, and how to give it. So be generous with you, begin a new love affair with you. And then see what happens in your heart and in your life.

 

 

© 2015 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.

Faces of Inspiration

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

A new book has just been published by American Breast Care and Breast Cancer Wellness magazine. It’s called Faces of Inspiration. It’s filled with stories about faith, hope, courage, support, strength, inner beauty, joy, love and transformation. I contributed and essay called The Heart of the Matter.

Here’s a link to an online sample of the book along with a link to purchase it. Have a look at consider purchasing a copy for yourself or to give as a gift.

http://www.americanbreastcare.com/FB_book/fibook.html#book5/page1

Faces-of-Inspiration Each of us is an inspiration, often in ways we don’t even know about. How many times has someone told you that you have made a difference in his or her life? I encourage you to begin to practice random acts of kindness and love for others and for yourself. Offer a compliment when you are standing in a line ~ tell that person that they have a beautiful smile or that their eyes sparkle. When you begin to look for what inspires and touches you, you will see more and more of it. It’s all around us all the time, if we only look.

Keep an Inspiration Journal ~ dedicate a journal to inspiration and fill it with quotes, stories, ideas, photos, whatever inspires you to experience happiness, joy, love or peace. Make a point to add something to it every day. Then when you need some inspiration, page through this journal and feel how it uplifts you. It can be that easy to shift your mood.

Here’s another reason to experiment with this practice ~ it creates intimacy. When we take the time to connect with someone and offer some words of kindness from our heart to theirs, it’s intimate. We all want to feel seen and loved. Offering a few words of inspiration and gratitude goes a long way to creating more love. The more you do it, the more it builds. It’s the same as the principle of compounding interest ~ when you put a little bit of money into savings on a regular basis, over time it grows and compounds and in the long run, can become a large sum. Let love, inspiration and intimacy compound and you will reap the benefits, as will all those around you.

This is a practice I’ve been doing for several months ~

Each day, I think of someone I love and appreciate. Then I call them or see them and ask if I can give them some love and appreciation. When they say yes, I look into their eyes or think about them if I’m not physically with them. I bring my awareness into my heart and how it feels about them. Then I let the words flow straight from my heart, showering them with all the ways they have touched my heart, inspired me, taught me, loved me, moved me and so on. Without editing or judging my words, I simply let them flow. It feels fabulous to open the flow of my love for them, and they love receiving it. Within a few minutes we are both uplifted. I invite you to do this practice and see what happens. You will be inspired and become an inspiration.

 

© 2014 Barbara Musser and Sexy After Cancer. Please feel free to share this content and include proper attribution.

More Ways to Play

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Did you have a play date last week? If so, how was it? If not, what got in the way? It’s easy to let the days pass without taking any action other than thinking about playing. If you thought about playing, what did you think? What story did you tell yourself about play and about why you weren’t going to make play a priority? The stories we tell ourselves are what shape our experiences. So this week, let’s make up a story.

If you were to call me up next week and tell me about how you played this week, what would your story say? Pretend that you’ve already played and had a really great time, and now you get to relive the play by sharing it…

Here’s a possible story ~

Last Saturday afternoon I went to several yard sales. I was in search of some slinky lingerie so that I could dress up and feel sexy. The first place I stopped had some feather boas in different colors. There was a red boa, a black boa and a white boa. I couldn’t decide which one I liked best so I bought all 3 of them. The feathers were soft and I loved the colors.

The next place I went to had some really cool red cowgirl boots. I love boots and these were my size, so I snapped them up, thinking that they’d be fun with the boas.

My next stop yielded some big crystal drop earrings and a full-length black satin robe that was a little clingy. The satin felt really good on my skin and it was only $5, so I got that.

I went back home thrilled with my purchases. I also bought some beautiful champagne flutes and a cut glass plate, thinking that I might like some champagne and strawberries in my sexy scene. I had a bottle of bubbly in the fridge and stopped at the farmers market for some fresh strawberries.

Before I donned my purchases, I decided to put on some make-up. I don’t usually wear make-up, so I decided to have some fun. I put on smoky eye shadow, dark eyeliner, two coats of black mascara, some blush and some red lipstick.  Out came the curling iron and I did my hair to look sexy, with lots of waves.

I put on the boots, robe, boas (all three of them!) and the earrings. I felt like a million bucks and when I looked in the mirror, I saw a very sexy woman. I poured myself a glass of champagne and put three big ripe strawberries on the plate. Then I put on some music with a slinky beat. I danced around the living room sipping champagne, nibbling strawberries and saying to myself, “I am one Sensual Babe.” I had the best day and evening.

What’s your story? Go ahead, let your imagination go and have some fun! Share your story with us so we can celebrate you with 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.

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.