Pleasure! What does that mean to you? How often do you get it? Are you willing to ask for it? Or are you like a lot of us, and perhaps have a vague sense of what gives you pleasure. But do you really listen to those little tingles? Do you follow your pleasure?
Recently at a party, I noticed a woman dancing by herself. I felt attracted to her, so I approached her to ask her if I could dance with her. In the past, I might have shied away, but I felt bold, and I wanted to exercise my muscle of asking for what I wanted. After a few minutes of dancing, I realized we didn't really have great dance chemistry. So I looked her in the eyes, and with gratitude, thanked her for letting me dance with her, and moved on. Such a little thing, but it felt SOOO empowering. First, to ask for what I wanted, and then second, to give myself the gift of being able to change my mind, without feeling guilty, without feeling obligated, without being afraid I would hurt her feelings or that she would think less of me somehow. THIS is the work of consent. To give yourself permission to say No. To be in touch with what you want, and be willing to ask for it!
My Journey. I've been on this journey for about a year now. One of the major catalysts was a Priestess Activation retreat I went to with Monique Darling of Everyday Tantra. In fact, I'm going again this November (if you're interested, let me know). It's been an unexpected journey of personal growth and self discovery. And I feel a calling to bring what I've learned to the Les Ladies Conscious Community.
Consent & So Much More. This retreat is where I first learned about consent. Consent--it sounds so easy, but it has so many powerful and rich layers to it. Because in order to say Yes or No to something, you really need to know what you desire. Is it something that you want, or are you saying Yes because it's what they want? Or saying Yes because you feel obligated in some way? Or saying Yes because you're afraid it will hurt the relationship if you say No? And I'm not just talking about s*x here, I'm talking about literally ANYTHING!
Asking For What You Want. And along with consent and knowing what you desire, is a willingness to ASK for it. Who would've known this would be sooo hard? It feels so vulnerable. You're putting something out there, making yourself vulnerable to being met with a No, or being judged for your ask.
What if No's Were Celebrated? What if instead, you were celebrated for asking--whether or not they were a Yes or a No to your request? This is the kind of community I am creating for myself. People who are kind, respectful, authentic, willing to ask for what they want, willing to honor someone else's ask, responding to a No with "Thank you for taking care of yourself" and really meaning it and willing to have their desires spoken out loud.
: At the Cuddle Puddle Pajamarama, we will not only talk about consent, but lead you through some exercises where you get to practice your No's--both giving and receiving! And to have those No's met with respect and grace. None of that defensiveness, taking it ultra personally, "how could you say no to me" crap! We will set the stage for you to practice your Yes's and your No's throughout the night. You don't have to do anything you don't want to do. You don't have to engage with anyone you don't want to. In fact, you can come and just observe the entire night if that's what you're up for.
In talking to women about this event, one of the common things I get is "I don't know if I want to touch a stranger." I have a few things to say about that. By coming, you are not obligated to touch anyone you don't want to. And you can change your mind about that or not! You might find after your arrive that you will no longer feel like the other women in the room are strangers.
Past Trauma: Many of us have had past trauma with our boundaries not being respected. We will establish in the agreements that breasts and genitals are off limits in general. This Cuddle Puddle is nonsexual. Nurturing? Yes! Sensual? Yes! Playful? Yes! But no sex will happen during or even afterwards (several women told me they experienced this unexpected surprise at a similar event they thought was nonsexual). So you might ask, why should I put myself in this situation of cuddling with a bunch of strangers? Well besides what I listed above, you get to decide what to say Yes to and what to say No to. You get to decide to change your mind if it turns out you realize you aren't into it. You will learn that a "maybe" equals a No. To wait for your internal Yes because doesn't everyone deserve to engage with another person who is a Yes to engaging back with them? You get to decide what your boundaries are. "You can touch my arm, but no other part of my body." Or, "you can touch me anywhere, but not on my face or ears."
***PLEASE: register ahead of time***. It really helps to ease the stress of the day of when people are already registered.
Fri, April 14. DOORS OPEN at 6:30 pm, DOORS LOCK at 7:00pm (Cuddle Puddle Begins)
COST: Love Exchange Sliding Scale: $22, 33 or $44/person, whichever you can afford. Venmo @LesLadies or Eventbrite.
NOTE: When you register via Eventbrite or pay on Venmo, you will be contacted directly to confirm your attendance and given further details. This will happen at an amazing super comfortable inviting space in NE DC with plenty of street parking.
Same day negative covid test required.
Of course, we still have our FREE virtual events:
Book Club: We host a monthly book club. This month, we will do a study group for Existential Kink by Carolyn Elliott.
Singles Salon: 1st Sunday of every month, March 5
Movie Night: 2nd Sunday of every month, Feb 12
Get To Know You Salon: 3rd Sunday of every month, Feb 19. This month we will be showcasing your talents!
Women of a Certain Age (WOCA): monthly, next one tonight, Feb 16.
Self Love & Compassion: 6 Week Masterclass--normally $198, now free! This is Module 1 of Love Essentials, a 6 Module, year long program. Available on demand, do it as your schedule permits.
How do I stay in the know on what's going on with the Les Ladies Conscious Community!! Maybe you aren't getting notifications. Maybe you don't know when these events are happening, and maybe you don't even know how to check your messages in the network or even know what network to check.
Here's are 4 easy steps to make sure you are in the know!
1. JOIN the Les Ladies Conscious Community. Although some of you may belong to the Les Ladies Meetup, the more robust private network that I encourage you to join is the Les Ladies Conscious Community, based on a Mighty Networks platform.
2. TURN ON NOTIFICATIONS. Make sure they're turned on in Mighty Networks. You can choose whether you want a daily digest or notifications as they occur. Click Here for a visual step by step.
3. SAFELIST with your internet provider. Internet providers tend to turn the notifications off believe it or not! To prevent this from happening, please "safelist" @mn.co emails (notice it's not @mn.com but @mn.co). For more info on how to do that, please go here.
4. DOWNLOAD Mighty Networks App on your phone. This makes it easier to get notifications. Be sure to turn on notifications in your phone's settings.
At Les Ladies, we believe that:
1. Creating a community of women* is key. One that feels safe and one that encourages you to be all of who you can be.
2. Everyone can learn how to find, create and maintain deeply satisfying, healthy, soul-expansive, loving relationships.
3. It all starts with self-awareness and self-love.
4. Personal commitment and the support of other amazing women accelerates your growth and development.
5. We're all in this together!
*female identified and nonbinary AFAB
With Love 💕 💗 and Anticipation,