When a Retreat Participant Gives an Interview to a Reporter

Dear People of the Page,

When a Back to the Body Participant Gives an Interview to a Reporter.....  

REPORTER: Why did you decide to go to a retreat? 

MELISSA: I had been following Pamela's writing on Facebook and in her book "Shameless" for more than a year when I made an impetuous decision to attend a weekend event she was holding in Seattle called a Portal. As part of the Portal, she held a demo of the table work that is done at her Back to the Body retreats. I'd never seen another woman lost in pleasure as she was during the demo and I was in awe, both of her on the table and the somatic body worker who was giving her the session. By the end of the hour demo, I knew that's what I wanted for myself. And for the first time since I'd started following Pamela's work, the pleasure that had seemed so far away and abstract in her book and writings finally felt attainable for me. The demo demystified the process of a woman claiming her own desire and pleasure, showing every woman there what was possible. I was an instant YES. 

REPORTER: Is your partner on board? If so, how did that happen? 

MELISSA: At the time I attended the first retreat, my 15 year marriage had been in a downward spiral towards divorce for quite a while, but it was still important to me that I not do anything that violated my marriage vows. To me, the boundaries and rules of somatic body work and one-way touch from a certified professional who I'd have no contact with outside of the retreat setting was in line with my commitment to my marriage. I didn't ask for my husband's blessing to attend the retreat, but I did explain to him what the somatic body work entailed, including its boundaries, and that it's all about a woman healing her relationship with her body. He accepted my choice, and it didn't take long after I returned from the first retreat for him to get fully onboard with my Back to the Body journey. As it turned out, exploring my pleasure in this safe container took so much pressure off our relationship and him. Until Back to the Body, I hadn't realized how much pressure I'd put on my marriage and husband to fill my every need and be my everything. Back to the Body helped me take back control of my body and my pleasure. I was no longer a passive victim in my life, but was taking charge of my needs. By taking that pressure off my marriage, we were able to come together in a whole new way. Today, our marriage is stronger than ever. I am so ridiculously happy and in love! And this year he's giving me such a gift by attending a Back to the Body couples retreat so that we can continue our pleasure evolution together. 

REPORTER: How was the hands on work for you? 

MELISSA: Before getting hands-on work at my first Back to the Body retreat, the only man who'd touched my body since I was twenty was my husband. I wondered if it would be weird or awkward, but I was so determined to re-write my relationship with pleasure, that I dove into the experience one hundred percent. The body workers are carefully vetted professionals who don't do anything without their client's permission. The woman is in charge of the session in every way. If she says don't touch, they won't. If she says stop, they will. If she says 'that doesn't feel good', they praise her for speaking up about her wants and needs. They keep their clothes on, use gloves, and there is no mouth contact. The container that Pamela and her team have built is so strong and safe. I have never felt uneasy or that I had anything to worry about. All that you have to do, as a woman on their table, is close your eyes, sink into yourself, and feel. It's magical. And the best part? If you're at a Back to the Body retreat, you know you have another opportunity the next day, so there's no rush, there's no trying to squeeze everything in or worry about climaxing or pushing yourself beyond your comfort zone. It's magical. 

REPORTER: What did you take away from it? 

MELISSA: What I've learned about myself at Back to the Body retreats is that my body is a divine feminine miracle. Truly. And I say this as a woman over forty, who's plus sized, with a C-section scar and stretch marks all over, but now I know that none of that matters. Once you learn that your body is capable of hour-long orgasmic trances and waves and waves of climactic pleasure, how could you care what your dress size is? How could a woman cling to the toxic body hate our culture teaches us once you've stepped fully into your own erotic awakening? 

REPORTER: Do you tell your friends--and if so their reaction? 

MELISSA: Yes, I tell my friends. I'm downright evangelical about my experience. And I recently talked to my mom about it, too, and I'm so glad I did. Talking honestly about my Back to the Body journey has opened up a new level of authentic conversation between me and the women in my life. We all have body image issues. We all yearn for deeper, more satisfying pleasure in our lives. It's a relief to be able to talk about this taboo topic in an open and honest way.

Thank you Melissa. I hope there is something here for you in reading her words. And if you're looking for an easy way to begin your own journey, we still have spots at our shorter, more affordable retreat in October, The Opening. Are you ready to step into your own erotic awakening??

Loving you from here,

Pamela Madsen