We are fresh off our Mastery Graduation weekend and I’m floating in a pleasure-filled haze! I am in deep gratitude for the extraordinary experience that Mastery 2013 has been for me. This was, without a doubt, a most exquisite Mastery class. They have created so much ravishing beauty for themselves and each other. It was unforgettable, astonishing really.
EVERY woman in this Mastery class tossed her panties into the ring and created her own version of a pleasure revolution in her life—and the culmination of it this weekend took my breath away.
Sister Goddess Sara was one of our Valedictorians at this year’s graduation, and I HAD to share her story with you. It is a true testament to the power of pleasure on a cellular level:
When I started Mastery, I had been given 6 months to live. And even though I was turning around my downward spiral, the specter of death was always on my shoulder. That prognosis was 7 months ago.
Being given a fatal diagnosis was the most shocking thing that has ever happened to me. I realized, under all my self-denial and unhappiness, I really liked this self. I didn’t want to lose this precious self I’d worked so hard on all my life! Even if I hadn’t done a great job of living my life, I wanted a chance to live it anyway!
I grew up with an alcoholic father and a rageaholic mother who stayed together 64 unfortunate years… I was miserable. I rebelled against my conservative Southern upbringing, dropping out of college and hitchhiking my way across country to study bodywork and consciousness in Berkeley, CA.
My personal life was not so great. I thought that life was a series of problems to overcome, and like an Olympic hurdler, I would run a few steps and then be embroiled in yet some other drama. This was misery-making, and made it impossible to reach for “more,” but I just didn’t know anything else. Meditation, spiritual practices, good diet, exercise—they all helped, but none of them WORKED to change the basic state I lived in long-term.
I was doing no better in my personal relationships. My children, the coolest people I know, had their own lives. My husband worked all the time. We had sex once a week, as it made him “too sensitive” for his hard-nosed business world. Nothing mattered but his deal. Ever. I lived in a state of such frustration! I had no power! My financial contribution to our expenses was so proportionally tiny that I just gave up. We left Maui (my home) to go to Europe for a 6-week trip in 2005, and did not come home until last year. Then we ended up in Portland, Oregon for about 4 years—this was the height of my unhappiness.
I wanted to leave my husband desperately and go back to Maui, as he would not listen to anything I had to say or honor what I wanted, but I couldn’t do it. So instead I asked to die. I DEMANDED. I felt it happen in my body, it rocketed thru my cellular structure. I didn’t know what it would look like, but I knew something had happened. I willed myself Out. Of. Here.
So. As someone who has no cancer on either side of my family, who has eaten organically since 20, who hiked every single weekend, I gave myself bone cancer. While I was in the throes of dying and being in such intense pain, my friends marveled that I didn’t complain or feel sorry for myself. How could I? I knew I gave this to myself. I was not the victim here. I was the perpetrator. Reversing that, though… It’s one thing to throw that switch, it’s quite another to try and take it back.
Enter: Mama Gena.
My first thought 2 years ago after I was diagnosed was to work with Mama Gena. That was too expensive, so I enrolled in Virtual Pleasure Boot Camp. It started to crack my container of misery. In Miami that year, I signed up for Mastery. I was determined to come last year, but I was deteriorating fast. I was in a wheelchair, would have to have someone come with me to help me shower, eat, or do anything, really. And the pain was off the charts. I realized it was unrealistic to think I could make the airplane trip, much less anything else, so I un-enrolled myself a few days before it started.
This year, I KNEW it was time. I knew I had no future to put it off into. We take the future for granted. That it will be there, and we can have it store our dreams and fantasies. When you are dying, it is incredibly sobering to realize you have no future. I try not to put anything off now. I want it all, and I want it NOW. So, when I said to my husband, “I MUST DO THIS!” he listened. I signed up for Mastery a few minutes before the registration closed. Was I crazy? What was I thinking? I was barely walking, still in some major pain but I knew I just HAD to be there. Nothing I’ve ever wanted to do has compelled me in the same way.
The first weekend it was obvious I wasn’t going to make it even to me, but I got on the boards and listened to the recordings and things started changing anyway. I had my hopes up for the second weekend and almost bought my ticket, but everyone on my healing team (and Pussy) was against it. Weekend 3 I made it! I flew thru MN to visit my kids so I could adjust to the time change and recover from my flight. Being in the room in person was life-changing. I couldn’t believe we did what we did. I couldn’t believe how high I got and how much fun I had. It was cellularly transformative.
Mastery has given me an ease inside my body I have never had because I am now comfortable in my life, and I am comfortable in myself. The stress and tension I carried all the time are just GONE. It makes healing much more likely, as stress is inflammatory, and cancer is an inflammatory disease. I feel so much better, day to day. Now, instead of the specter of death on my shoulder, life is on my shoulder like Jiminy Cricket!
As for the cancer, I got my test results back the other day and my numbers dropped the most they have yet! With less chemo and steroids!
I think it’s the Courtesan Walk, myself.
This is one of the best days of my life!
As for my guy, the last two years since my diagnosis have softened him up—and then Mama Gena strolled in and changed our lives. We had sex 3 times in one week! He was overjoyed about it, too. He can’t believe what a fun and amazing wife he has now. I look forward to being with him instead of dreading it. We connect with each other instead of relating like cardboard cutouts. Life has gotten open-ended and adventurous and fun. It has NEVER been like this. There was some major rupture along the way, and out of the ruins has come true intimacy and caring.
Mastery is definitely the best thing I’ve ever done. I’ve changed my basic state of being. I am in wonder at my happiness and peace with my day-to-day life.
It has given me back my life, cleaned, pressed, and wonderfully fresh. I am happy and I love myself. It was as if this state were waiting all along, and Mastery has allowed me to fall into it, to float in self-acceptance and love that I had only windows into before. Life stretches softly, infinitely, out from me. If I get unhappy, I spring clean. If something big and problematic comes up, I swamp. I cannot believe this is me, now. It is so pleasurable to be alive!
* * *
Breathtaking, right? And the truth is, none of us have a guaranteed future. The practice of the Womanly Arts, in each moment, with pleasure as your guide, is how you create an ecstatic life, and it is available to each and every woman on this planet—regardless of your circumstances.
I am so grateful to the women of Mastery 2013, and to every woman who attended graduation. I am grateful to each one of you who have taken my courses, read my books, read the blogs, and post on Facebook. Together we are changing the world—for ourselves, our daughters, our sons, and generations to come.
I hope to have you join us in the classroom next year for the odyssey that is Mastery. Until then, enjoy the photos of the graduation festivities!
With so much love and pleasure,