So let me first just brag a little on my growth – to write or say the word “vagina” has not been something I have been particularly comfortable with, not too sure why I just haven’t. I think it’s probably because I have lived so disconnected from this part of me for so long. So I am pumped I can write about this and say this word right now on my sexual healing journey. Ok, that’s it…enough bragging!

brainI love brain science, neuroscience, it fascinates me the way God made our brains. He thought of everything and I love learning about it. I heard something last night in my “sex class” about neural pathways that I didn’t know before. So there’s a connection between our genitals, vagina for women, penis for men, and our hearts. I mean, it makes sense, think about it. When we give ourselves sexually to our husband/wife we open ourselves to them, we become vulnerable, offering, receiving, surrendering our bodies and hearts to the process of lovemaking.

These parts of us are supposed to be connected.

But many of us have been living disconnected.

Unfortunately, I do not have a testimony of waiting. I didn’t save sex for marriage, I was promiscuous and broke my connection. Sex outside the safe confines of marriage forces you to.

You can offer your body, but you must guard your heart.

Broken connection.

It becomes a physical act void of spiritual connection. Neural pathways created in those years that disconnected my vagina from my heart, disconnected the physical from the spiritual. Of course I have been embarrassed to say the word “vagina” –

my story is full of shame, my story is full of loss, my story is full of disconnection.

The neural pathways connected to sex are intertwined

with dirty,

with discarded,

with covering up and hiding,

with used.

There is nothing sacred, nothing saved, nothing spiritual about these neural pathways.

Broken connection.

Disconnection.

And sex is not sacred when these parts of us are disconnected. I have never understood the idea that sex between a husband and wife is a beautiful form of worship between the two offered to a holy God.

What?! Weird! I haven’t understood that because there has been a disconnection between my physical and my spiritual, my sexual and my heart.

So what’s a broken girl to do?

Well, like I said earlier, God thought of everything, He really is the coolest! So He made this amazing, miraculous process that our brains can rewire, make new neural pathways and change the way we think. It’s known as platisticity. It makes no difference how old you are, how long you have been thinking the way you think, it can be changed!

pathway

You can “grow” new ways to think!

You can connect what has been disconnected!

He thought of everything. He knew we would be broken in a fallen, deceived world and He made a way out. Isaiah 43:19 reminds us, “Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.”

You don’t have to live disconnected!

It will take work but you can change it.

Have you heard the saying, “It takes 21 days to create a new habit” – do know that it takes 21 days to create a new neural network? Your default thinking, your default reactions, your default disconnection can be changed in 21 days if you purpose to renew your mind and look for the way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.

Sanctify your marriage bed, sanctify your sex life, sanctify your sexuality.

Take it from the hands of the enemy of your soul,

offer it to a holy God who not only created it but delights in it!

Worship Him with your spirit, soul, and BODY!

Marc and I have come a long way from where we started 16 years ago but I still have work to do, new neural pathways to grow. I struggle with looking him in the eye in intimate moments, I look away, it’s uncomfortable and now I know why…it’s that disconnection, it’s that old shame creeping up trying to steal my today and go down the path of that old neural network, that default thinking.

Taking my thoughts captive,

finding rivers in the desert,

making new pathways,

changing my brain chemistry,

looking my husband in eye,

vagina-heart together,

Connecting,

Sexual is spiritual, spiritual is sexual.

Sanctified!

healed-our-marriage

heart marked

I know people who schedule sex, they actually put it on their calendars and plan for it…I have never understood that. It has felt so sterile, so unspontaneous to me. I didn’t get it…but I think I do now.

Let me explain…

So I have been taking, what I fondly refer to as “my sex class” on this journey of understanding and embracing my sexual self and although this journey has not been about sex in my marriage it is absolutely about sex in my marriage because what you put your mind on, well, it motivates your body. So talking about sex and learning about myself as a sexual being has me focused more on sex…libido rising…desire increasing…sex on the brain right?!

So I get it!

Now I am not scheduling sex, that’s not the point of this blog…whether you do that or not makes no difference to me, whatever floats your boat and works for you and your man. The point of this blog is the revelation of that “aha” of why people do it. I am sure there are lots of reasons that have people scheduling sex into their lives – if you have babies, you are exhausted and it may be the only way you get it in, if you own your own company, your mind may be preoccupied with other things so scheduling sex keeps it a priority in your life, if your libido is lacking perhaps scheduling sex keeps you at least trying to make sex an important part of your married life…whatever your reason I get the “why” behind it.

What you think on…your body responds to! So if you schedule a sex date, you see it on your calendar, you have all day to think about and get yourself ready for it, get those “juices” (haha) flowing and those hormones revved up, your body desiring, readying, wanting to be touched and kissed and held. Make time to feel pretty, sexy, desirable and move into your feminine self.

It works, it really does!

The mind is a powerful thing – mind over matter (body) is a real thing! You can will your body to be free from sickness with your mind. You can will your body to do amazing things like lift heavier weights than you ever thought possible, jump higher or run longer than you ever believed you could. You can will your body to try new foods, dare new adventures, trust in new relationships.

The mind is amazing!

You can do anything you set your mind to!

So, with that being said, your mind can will your body to want to have sex. If you purpose to think on, read a “sexy” book, watch a “sexy” movie.

(***And let me put a disclaimer here – I am not talking about pornography or anything even close to that – those sorts of things trigger the heck out of me and frankly just make me pissed off at my husband, not desire him. I am also not talking about romance novels that introduce you to some hero perfect specimen of a man who knows how to romance a woman and turn her on by looking in her direction, those piss me off too because my husband ain’t nothing like Mr. Perfect Fiction.)

classy

I am talking about a funny, clean comedy like The Proposal or The Notebook (athough I must confess I don’t watch those types of movies, too much sadness for me – a friend told me it was a good, gushy one though) that helps you to connect heart to heart or read Dr. Kevin Leman’s books, Sheet Music or Sex Starts in the Kitchen. Something that puts sex on the brain.

Another way get in the mood is to remember a time when you had great sex with your husband or a romantic evening and let that ruminate in your mind for the day. Think on the things you like about your man, or used to like about him if you are struggling. A sexy look from across a room, a time he played with your hair or grabbed for your hand, that day he wore a new shirt and looked hot, or took care of something that made you feel cared for and secure. There was a reason you were attracted to him back in the day…think on those things.

As you choose to will your brain to remember fond moments your body will oblige with desire and interest.

heal(***Another disclaimer, for those of you healing and still in pain from betrayal, abandonment, neglect etc. please give yourself the grace and time you need to heal yourself body, soul, and sprit. Healing and forgiveness take time…this blog is not for you today sweet friend, read it in a few months or years when your heart is in a better place and your have been gracious to yourself with the time you have needed to find safety in your relationship again!)

This is a delicate subject!

So much pain and hurt around our sexuality. Only you know your story and what damage has been done to you and only you can determine if you are ready to step into this vulnerable place again. If you are not ready, please seek out the help you need to heal – don’t stay locked away in pain, life it too short to let the actions of others rob you of what is your God-given gift.

Your sexuality is a God-given gift!

Invite her into healing! 

Ok…back to sex on the brain.

sex pic

So! Be mindful of your thoughts and let it peruse the memory aisle in your brain of those naked, vulnerable, giving yourself, toe curling moments. Bathe in those memories and just see how your body responds! She will thank you for it and SO WILL YOUR HUSBAND!

 

skinny-dipping

I shocked my husband this past weekend, shoot, I shocked myself to be quite honest. We had an opportunity this past weekend, thanks to several wonderful people who stepped in and helped us with our girls, to escape for 3 full days. I found this beautiful bed and breakfast “off the map” tucked away on five acres of secluded, beautiful, wildlife sprinkled sanctuary in Abita Springs, LA and we escaped!  It was so good and so needed!

It takes awhile to settle in, to let the peace and nothingness of a space like that invade you. A small two story cabin tucked into the woods, huge porch swing, gravel paths, a golf cart to drive around the property and a “private” pool completed the scene. A little corner of heaven tucked away right there in Abita Springs, who knew?!

We decided to go check out the pool the second evening we were there, a small hot tub that wasn’t so hot, a rock waterfall, the sun falling behind the trees that surrounded us in the middle of this forest.  All alone, I felt brave! So I did it, I took off my bathing suit! He was shocked, you see I am not that girl! I am modest, I cover up, I barely even wear a bathing suit in front of him in public. I am a shorts and tank top sort of pool sporter, I do NOT get naked in public!

I am not sure what came over me but I felt daring and every now and again I like to shock him, heehee, it keeps him guessing and off balance in a good way!

Our relationships can become so predictable! So boring! The same old, same old! Sex in this position, with the lights off, with lots of rules that govern our hands and mouths and eyes! Romance looks like this and not that. Offering each other love the way we want it instead of the way the other needs it. Routines and ruts that bore us to tears and keep us stuck in boring relationships.

This pool scene is such a picture of the course my life is on right now – not that any of you will EVER see me physically naked, that I can promise you, I am not that brave, but living naked in so many other ways. I see myself stripping off my proverbial bathing suit as I begin to share the intimate parts of my life with you through this blog, in my classes, in my friendships.

I don’t feel like I have been hiding, if you know me and follow me at all, I am a pretty “put it out there” kind of girl – REAL is my motto because this world needs us to show up, masks off and bear ourselves so that others can heal and get free. Your story, in its unadulterated version, frees others to be ok in their own skin, in their own story. When we hear other peoples’ stories, the messes they were and see where they have come from and are now, a big sigh of relief is released as someone stops holding their breath, “Oh, ok, I’m ok, it’s going to be ok!”

We give others permission to be a mess in the middle!

But this new found “naked” freedom is really about an invitation into the quieter thoughts, the deeper things, the hidden and more private parts. I am pretty sure that a year ago I would never have taken off that bathing suit and if I had, you would never have known about it. It’s stretching to put this out there – some of you imagining the scene, me naked, oh my goodness, stop it, please just don’t – but we can’t help it, our minds go places and that’s uncomfortable to me.

I like to be seen in a “good” light and I like to control what you see about me and how you see me.

But the truth is, that is not my business and I must stop letting what I think you might think control me!

It has stunted my growth for far too long!

To be daring feels dangerous and makes me want to hold my breath!

Can I really push publish at the end of this?

Can I really put this out into the world?

Can I allow people to see and know and think whatever the hell they want?

Can I?

Do I dare?

I DO DARE! 

It’s where I am, where I am going!

Learning to be no matter what you think about it! Moving into some of what is coming is going to shock some of you, it’s going to challenge some of you, it’s going to embarrass and make the blood rise into your face as you read and hear some of what I might say. It’s going to possibly make some of you stop following, stop reading…I hope not but you might! It’s going to make some of you stand up and cheer, “Finally! It’s about time!” (you know who you are). It’s going to move some of you into your own “it’s about time” freedom. It’s going to dare you! And at the end of it all – you may be skinny dipping too! Who knows?!

Let’s stop putting rules around what it’s all supposed to look like.

Let’s start breaking down the walls we have built to keep us.

Let’s step out of the boxes we have boxed ourselves into.

It doesn’t matter what other people think, I will be telling myself that alot this season,

It doesn’t matter! 

I am good with my God. He is delighted and pleased with me. He is directing my path. He created me naked and unashamed. He gave me a husband to enjoy and a body to share. He says, “Sex is a good!” It was all His idea. He invites each of us into this freedom. The only thing that matters is what He thinks. He calls me to be daring! And to free others to be daring!dare2

So here’s a challenge –

I dare you to do the next uncomfortable thing that will begin to free you on your own

“naked and unashamed” journey.

One small baby step,

I dare you! 

And I would love to hear about it

IF YOU DARE!!!