Sunday, June 16, 2013

Dorothy's Diary: Body Shame and Hiding Our True Selves

As part of The Gluten Free Health Challenge, Dorothy will be sharing her journal entries with you the first 3 Sundays of every month from now until December. She'll be receiving free health coaching from Drew Parisi of Parisi Nutrition and Iris Higgins of Your Fairy Angel during this period. To learn how to join us from home, click here.
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Confession time: 
Well...I need to confess something to you. On date #1 with Mr. Dynamic, he actually did more than touch my legs. He pretty much touched everything there is to touch. And I returned the favor.

The reason I'm confessing is because I want to talk about body image and how a negative body image affects your sex life and romantic relationships. And I believe this is also connected to food and food issues.

When I was younger, I had some very bad reactions from certain men after taking off my clothes. I also had some good ones, but it's the negative ones that stick with you. For example, I heard: I cannot marry you because I can't stay attracted to your boobs/body. Another comment: Can you please put your bra back on? Yeah, those are actual statements said to me. Seriously! And I completely believed them and felt ashamed, like I was damaged goods.

























This photo was taken by an old boyfriend. He thought my hips were a little too big and he was the one who couldn't marry me because of my body. I remember exactly how I felt at that time - I thought I was fat, yes fat and not pretty. Now looking at the photo, I see a beautiful young girl. Why couldn't I see it back then?

I'm telling you all this because I have spent my whole life and so much energy on hiding my body beneath my clothes. Nothing too tight. Wearing two bras to the gym to hold my chest down. All sorts of secret measures. Keeping a t-shirt on in bed during sex, trying to cover my chest with pillows. Anything I can think of to avoid being completely naked. Naturally, I've always been a "lights off" gal. Even while having sex, I'm thinking about the position, what does my body look like, how can I hide the jiggly parts. It takes a whole lot of energy to hide yourself. It's almost impossible to experience full pleasure, let alone an orgasm.

Over the years, it became a terrifying experience to take off my clothes in front of a man, especially the first time. I never knew what kind of reaction I would get. I used to wait until I had dated the man for a while, until I knew he liked me. I thought he would accept my body more if he liked me. (Nope, not necessarily the case.) Then I decided NO, take your clothes off early on in case there is a bad reaction. Then who cares if you never see the guy again.

I'm giving you all this history to let you know that I was pretty darn scared on that first date. I mean I was petrified! We started out with nice conversation and a glass of wine, but in his New York ways, Mr. Dynamic was direct and pretty intense. Not letting me avoid or hide. Then it turned a bit romantic. Okay, not a bit. It felt more like the earth was parting under my feet. Mr. Dynamic took off his shirt and then said, "Okay, you next." I had to instantly decide what to do. What the heck? Don't think! Just go for it. I took off my top, then my skirt. He took off his shorts. Then he took off the rest of my clothes, and OMG I was naked. Just plain naked, out of my environment, and almost numb with the fear. Then I heard Mr. Dynamic say, "You have awesome tits," and I knew it was going to be okay. He said, "Guys must date you for your chest," and it felt like the greatest compliment ever. I started smiling. This was a GOOD reaction.

The only thing I'll mention at this point is that when I saw Mr. Dynamic naked, I almost started whooping with delight, and said a thousand thank you's to the heavens above. That was one sexy naked man standing in front of me. And he took charge from there. I'm not saying it was all breezy, easy beautiful. Some TMI excerpts:

Mr. Dynamic: I have never had to work this hard to get someone to relax and have fun in bed. Ever! (Said after over an hour of him trying to make his moves while I was jumpy and resisting and scared.)

Mr. Dynamic: You are the most uptight chick I have ever met. I would NEVER have to worry about you sleeping around. (I told him I was surprised he hadn't given up yet. He responded by saying he might have when he was younger, but not now that he was older and wiser.)

Mr. Dynamic: Owwwwwwwww (holding his jewels because I accidentally kicked him while trying to turn around on the bed.)

The good news is that Mr. Dynamic knows a woman's body, and once I relaxed enough, the night was FANFUCKINGTASTIC. I mean, I couldn't have dreamed it up that good.

I wondered what would happen at the end of playtime. Would he ask me to go? Would I pick up my clothes and sneak out? I wasn't sure what the protocol was. As it turned out, there was no discussion. I went to put on my t-shirt, and Mr. Dynamic said, "No clothes in bed." Then he put his arms around me, pulled me into his body and went to sleep.

I'd love to say that I slept blissfully in his arms. That wasn't the case. He never moved. I was a restless sleeper; I could not stay still. Then I couldn't breathe. I felt a bit claustrophobic. I kept moving over to my side of the bed, but Mr. Dynamic would move over too. Finally I hit the edge. I got up out of bed and went into the living room several times. I tripped on a step and broke my big toe nail. I finally just stayed out on the couch and stared out the window until the light came up. Mr. Dynamic, on the other hand, was sleeping soundly in his bed.

When he woke up, Mr. Dynamic cooked me a lovely breakfast. He acted like this was the norm. I didn't tell him that I wasn't used to spending the night - and I certainly wasn't used to a man cooking me breakfast! It really was this amazing date - packed with nervousness, fear, discovery, self-awareness, personal growth, and best of all, really great sex. When I drove away, my body was alive and my mind was calm.   

A little over a week later:
I didn't know if I was going to see Mr. Dynamic or even if he would come over (although there had been lots of sexy calls and texting). But I just wanted the house to have clean energy again. I opened all the windows and let the fresh air in. Washed the dishes, did loads of laundry, cleaned the kitchen countertops, stove, etc. Next came the bathroom, then swept and mopped. Wow, I was feeling so proud of myself! Did more laundry. Time to pick up the bedroom, make the bed, fluff the pillows, hide the sex toys.

Then I checked my phone. Mr. Dynamic had tried calling me at:
11:07am
11:15am
12:02pm
12:25pm
12:27pm
12:32pm

What??? I was in such Cinderella cleaning mode that I hadn't noticed. I called Mr. Dynamic immediately.

Me: Hi there.
Mr. D: Hi, I'm in Auburn headed your way.
Me. What?! You are?
Mr. D: Yes, now how do I get there?
Me: Umm... Do I have time to take a bath?
Mr. D: Yes, I think you should.
Me: Okay, bye.

RUN! Run down the hall and start running the tub. Shoot, shoot, shoot. No notice!! Thank GOD I cleaned my house. I'm not joking. Thank God. I would NOT have let him in. I have NEVER invited anyone over, especially not a man. OMG. Shoot. Okay, think. Take bath, shave legs (second time now), some lotion for the legs, and quick, what am I going to wear?! Shoot, I can't wear the same thing as before. What am I going to wear?!?!

Throw on shorts and a sweatshirt. Now I know that's not sexy but he could arrive at any moment. It was the first thing I grabbed. My face was clean - no makeup. Slooowww down, Dorothy. 

My cell phone rang. It was Mr. Dynamic. He's a bit lost. He tells me he's a mess, and I said, "Good, thank God. I don't have makeup on." He asked why I needed that (love him), I told him "to look beautiful," and he simply ignored that and asked for directions. I ended up staying on the phone with him the whole way until he arrived. I heard knocking on my front door. I quickly brushed my hair and did a quick prayer to the universe. Then I opened my door...

I tried to give him the tour but he just started kissing me and was sort of lifting me/dragging me towards my bedroom. He was a man with a focus. My head was spinning. I think he was naked on my bed in less than three minutes. Off went my sweatshirt. Off went my shorts. I flung my bra and underwear across the room. 

Here's the amazing thing. THE AMAZING THING. I took my clothes off and I did not try to hide or cover up. I did not worry about hiding my jiggly parts. I did not try to put a pillow over my chest. It's unbelievable but I was not self-conscious at all. This is the first time - THE FIRST TIME EVER EVER EVER - that I felt like this. I cannot tell you how utterly liberating it was. I have spent so much energy on covering up and avoiding my body.

For now, let's just take a two-hour pause so you can watch the butterflies and hummingbirds that are flying around my ceiling and outside my window. I'm hearing zippidy doodah, if you wish upon a star, and any other Disney song you can think of. Bluebirds are singing. Flowers are smiling at me. I am dancing barefoot on the clouds.

I am alive, I am alive, I am alive, I am alive.

6 comments:

chibbylick said...

I am jealous! I am jealous! I am jealous!
Seriously, I want what you are having!

Tasty Eats At Home said...

Sooooo excited for you! You are beautiful and you deserve a man like Mr. dynamic to show you!

Alyssa said...

Awww, congrats! I felt like I was reading a romance novel. :) Truly spectacular. I feel like within the past year, I have gone through the same rejection as you experienced in your past (online dating). It has made me weary to pursue any new relationships. I'm a naturally shy persion, and in a weird place where I don't feel comfortable being really forward, nor do I want to make the guy not interested by not doing giving him what he wants. Your Mr. D sounds like a perfect match. I hope one day I find my Mr. D :)

Unknown said...

Dorothy - I am so excited for you!

Metta

Amy said...

My husband and I have been together 20 years and he is the most wonderful man. He never makes me feel less about anything. My relationship before that was the exact opposite. It makes all the difference to have someone in your life who makes you feel special. I'm very happy for you!

Exclusive dating agency London said...

That would be a so exciting moment for Dorothy, I think she have got the right person and they love each other a lot.

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