One of my hidden talents is…I give really good massages.
My family are the main beneficiaries, particularly Husby, WonderAunty and Mum.
They’re not any kinds of ‘lie down in a towel with essential oils, candles and a CD of whale-music’ deal – they tend to be more of an on-the-go, meeting-you-where-you-need-to-be kind of deal: I will massage at computer chairs, at the kitchen table, in the kitchen (whilst cooking happens), over the dishes as they get done, on sofas, in gardens…wherever.
I’ve honed my technique over the years (and years) that I’ve been doing them, and I seem to be best with feet, necks-and-shoulders and heads. Though in the past I’ve also had a passing go at backs and arms/hands.
According to those who enjoy them, I’m pretty darn good at hitting sore muscles and snagged nerves and working them loose again. I don’t go lightly (I went for a massage once at a spa – a plinky-plonky music and candles one, and it was totally weird – I was expecting all my knots to get worked out, and instead there was this…smoothing, stroking thing which happened and nearly sent me to sleep, which wasn’t *unpleasant* but was a bit discomfitting) and the occasional “ouch!” and squirm *might* make me grin in a slightly sadistic way…but on the whole, my point is that those knots ain’t gonna come loose by themselves, but that I can help.
Massaging brings me a certain amount of enjoyment as well – to see someone I care about stressed and wound up, and the tension showing through in the tightening of their muscles and the ensuing aches, is sucky, and to be able to help them by giving them some release from the pain, even if only temporarily, is amazing.
I particularly like giving head massages. I don’t know why, (and whether it’s true or whether it’s just something I’ve convinced myself of) but as I massage a person’s head, I get a kind of linked, intuitive ‘feel’ about which pressure points need attention and which areas need smoothing or pulsed pressure or little circular movements of the fingertips. I can *almost* feel across my own scalp the areas which I need to focus on next, and how to approach them for maximum effect.
I’ve also learned how important it is to keep returning to the temples and the pressure points around the ears; those just in front of where the top of the ear joins the head, and the ones hidden behind the ear in the little nook between neck and skull. There are important pressure points on the outsides of the eye-sockets, high up on the cheekbones and down the forehead in two lines above the eyebrows.
Then there are the lines of pressure points across the top of the head and high up on the nape of the neck, in the dip where the base of the skull sits, and down the two tendons between the neck and the back. Those, too, are vital in any good head massage, and I make a point of ensuring that I focus on all these areas as well as the ‘in-betweenier’ ones, and return to the most important several times during the session.
Seeing a visible difference in the person’s levels of relaxation as I work is a huge driving factor, and I’ll keep going for as long as I can stand (or time permits), watching as that beloved person is released from their tension and their eyes begin to sparkle again. My hands might ache, but it’s an ache I cherish because in it, I am reminded that I am, in the most tangible way possible, caring for someone I love very much.
But. I hate, loathe and cannot STAND having my own shoulders or neck massaged. It’s one of the things which makes me most squirmy and run away fastest. On the other hand, having my back gently scratched makes me physically melt into a puddle of happiness.
If YOUR hidden (or not so hidden) talent is poetry, oBOY have I got an opportunity for you.
The highly exclusive and wonderfully beautiful poetry site, The Well Tempered Bards, is looking for Guest Bards to feature.
You’ll get your poetry published and pimped, along with (if you want) your bio and links to your blog and social media connections.
This is MADE OF WIN!
Contact me via Twitter if you’re interested, or let me know in the comments below.
I did some important learning today, after a pre-emptive chat with WonderAunty about my struggles surrounding self-worth and self-image. She agreed that (having witnessed) the way I was raised is a huge, huge part of the problem, and that I’ve been forced into a place of believing these negatives and taking them on as ‘my own’, but that in challenging the way I receive feedback and intentionally creating new neural pathways to do with ‘not automatically dismissing every positive thing I hear about myself’ and ‘framing negatives within a rational context’, that I can maturely take responsibility for realigning my view and understanding of myself.
This. Is. HUGE.
I’m gonna work on it.
The sun shone this afternoon. I got to have snuggles with Niece and Neff, which filled my heart right up. Husby got me new headphones (David Bowie sounds so much better when the left side doesn’t conk out), we went out to dinner with some of his friends, we had gelato for dessert (maybe I like ice-cream. Sometimes). It was a good day.
I found an ancient first draft of the Secret Book of Rules (a.k.a. Book of Secret Rules) and it suggested that the get-out clauses therein mightn’t ALL be related to the TToT, and that (in fact) with the right dance (and just enough wiggle), the Seven GuardVirgins could be persuaded to allow a verbal, non-binding contract to cover such events as this.
It was late at night, and our intrepid writer was minding her own business, scurrying around the internet in the most benign of ways, when what to her horrified eyes should appear, but a prank, played by someone who calls herself ‘friend’.
Her name tagged in a photograph on Facebook, our writer clicks, wondering what on earth she’s been gotten into.
A picture pings up in the screen, terrifying her to her very core; exploding her mind into emotions of fear and horror and the memories of the first time she ever saw that image.
She responds, quaking, trying to tear her eyes away from that transfixingly awful sight, and utterly unable to do so.
The friend laughs, callously, and sends more images which evoke further fear, leaving her with their wickedness emblazoned in the forefront of her memory, just before bedtime.
She’s pretty certain that nightmares will ensue, and faces sleep that night with wide eyes, watching every shadow, just to make sure that she doesn’t somehow, by accident…blink!