What makes new relationships so sense-sational is we get to be vulnerable all over again. We meet in the field of not knowing—one mystery to another—and feel the flutter of our simultaneous fear and curiosity. We risk reaching out further and exposing our heart’s deepest desire. We behold the divine masculine and feminine in flesh and blood, before familiarity dulls our sight. We believe in love, fresh and new again, and allow ourselves to be transformed by our experience.
What we forget is we can return to this heightened place of sensation, even if we’ve been in relationship with the same person for years, or are not in a relationship at all.
Vulnerability is the portal, and the only requirement is our willingness.
My picture of vulnerable is a newborn baby, opening her eyes to the world for the first time. Most of us can’t remember this experience because it was probably too terrifying. Childhood traumas aside, the world of form is overwhelming enough. Humans adjust to overwhelm by either expanding or contracting into our experience, more often the latter.
Fortunately, we hold every beautiful, terrifying memory of overwhelm and contraction within the cells of our bodies. I like to think of every cell as a room in my body’s house. Some of the doors to the rooms are open and some of them are closed.
The key to being vulnerable, to being born again over and over—without declaring Jesus as our lord and personal savior—is to seek out those closed doors within our being.
Behind every closed door is a virginous part of our soul that has been waiting to experience life and love again for the first time.
We all know the thrill of experiencing something, whether it’s sex or a foreign country, for the first time. On one hand, we don’t know what the hell we’re doing or where we’re going, but on the other hand, we are especially delightful to be around when we don’t know. Maybe this is why life tends to favor beginners, offering its most magical encounters to those who dare to step into the unknown.
So why do we keep our virginous selves in the closet?
The irony is we think we are the most attractive when we embody self-confidence.
To a degree, this is true, but to the heart (which is the only place relationships can grow) vulnerability is much sexier than confidence, which keeps us limited and stuck in what we know best.
Given the choice, if we could relive the romance we had when we first met our intimate partners, most of us would. So why don’t we choose to be vulnerable?
For the simple reason that our vulnerability lies beneath layers of terror, which we experience as varying degrees of emotional pain.
And even the most conscious of us have resistance to pain. We don’t see the sign on the door that says: “Sparkling new virginous self inside.” We see the one that reads: “Beware of pain,” and we stay as far away as possible.
At this distance we completely forget all about our closed doors, which is why we have to make things happen in our lives to feel them. We think, for example, our man has betrayed us. We think something is happening outside of us, when really it’s our internal alarm system going off.
It’s one of our closed doors sounding, “Feel me! Open me!”
Not that our men shouldn’t also be accountable for their actions, but if we blame all of our pain on them, our doors will stay closed and we will only experience the same old level of intimacy as we did before.
If we’re honest with ourselves, we were secretly bored with the relationship to begin with. We knew something needed to change, but we didn’t know what or how. Or if we’re really honest, we’d admit we didn’t want to make the effort to make the change, which would involve risk, pain and usually some kind of death.
Because life is birthed through women and we experience the death of life through our monthly menses, women are more attuned to the natural cycles. We feel the emotion or energy-in-motion of life within our bodies. We feel ecstasy when this energy is flowing freely and pain when it is not.
When women are connected to our bodies, and the energy in motion that is flowing through us, we can feel our closed doors.
When we know how to use our awareness and our breath to expand into the contracted places in our bodies, we discover that emotional pain is really pleasure that’s waiting to be experienced!
When we can feel the chaos of our strongest emotions and bear witness, rather than be overtaken by them, we can reclaim our lost soul parts and all the eros energy held within them.
This weekend on a women’s retreat, I opened a couple of those closed doors, and returned to my man with new erotic innocence. Eyes wide and blinking, heart soft, legs wobbly.
“You get to make love to a part of me that no one has ever touched before,” I whisper in his ear.
To which he begins to ravish me, slowly, tenderly as he would a virgin, as he would a woman opening to the world of sensuality and love for the first time.