Thanks so much to Dick Schmidt for this fantastic photo (and to Jan Haag, who passed it on to me!) – Dick shot it on Maui last year, at a cafe/shop called
enkrateia, which means “possessing power, strong, having mastery or possession of, continent, self-controlled” (Kenneth S. Wuest, Word Studies in the Greek New Testament, “Galatians,” p. 160). Vincent’s Word Studies of the New Testament adds that it means “holding in hand the passions and desires”
Holding in the hand the passions and desires. enkrateia. And let’s face it — self-control and self-stimulation are not even remotely mutually exclusive. Yes, this is a Biblical term that has as its understood interpretation something entirely opposite of masturbate — it means temperance, continence.
But why is self-love considered intemperate? (These are the auto-erotic questions for the morning; it’s a philosophizing kind of day.)
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I notice how I’ve quit, for the moment, worrying about coming in different ways. Just for now — after reading stories by, chatting with and listening to the words of friends / colleagues / inspiring others who have claimed exactly how they like to come, with no apology or equivocation — I’m entirely ok with coming how it feels best to me right now, and that’s in the goddamn shower.
This morning, all through my morning pages, through the dog walk and playing ball in the sun, through my breakfast prep and puppy breakfast prep, my body was talking to me. I could hear my labia, those nerves, swelling, singing a morning song, urging me on.
Please, they were saying. Isn’t it our turn yet?
I hushed them. Shush. Just wait a second. Dang it, I have other things to do.
But they did not go quiet.There was a constant hum between my legs, like something just slightly electrified.
Then it was their turn. I nestled us down (can one nestle into porcelain?) under the water and started my fantasy-surfing, looking for what would click.
Sometimes I explicitly work to fantasize about acts that I want to associate orgasm with — I mean, I think about how I want to be able to come in real life (fascinating, no? am I not in my real life when I’m on my back with my hands between my legs? So deeply internalized is that sense of masturbation vs real sex. ) — I mean, how I want to be able to come with a partner — I have this idea that if I come while I’m thinking about whatever that thing is (oral sex, getting taken by a couple of hot dykes, just to pull two completely random ideas out of the air), my body will associate orgasm with those acts, and then it’ll be easier for me to come while I’m doing those things with a partner. (As soon as a couple of dykes want to help me see if my idea is effective, I’ll let you know.)
It may very well be that I think too much about all this, and that it’s much better (better? Do we even need that word here?) just to let my body feel what she’s/we’re feeling, wherever we are, and to just go with that in the moment.
Anyway — this morning I tried to do some of that applied-fantasy work, and then I fell onto something completely different, something having to do with me acting on another’s body, rather than someone else taking me, and I came fast and hard as soon as that fantasy clicked into place. And then I was giggling at myself, at how I try to control even my damn fantasies, at how difficult and how delightful it can be to just let go into what works in the moment.
Still tingling here, and grateful — and with fewer cramps: still a bonus.
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Tomorrow I’m off for nearly a week out of town; I’m excited to see how I can work out the daily orgasms/blog posts during the trip. Posts might come later in the day,but I’ll get ‘em (and me) up!
Be easy with you and your body today. Thanks for reading — come again tomorrow!