For the last few years I’ve been learning to play the flute, and after taking a few lessons in the last 6 months I’ve been steadily improving. Playing simple tunes and hearing that clear beautiful sound I’ve always loved was so exciting! Looking at the gleaming silver of my instrument and feeling the keys click under my fingers dropped me into moments of ecstasy. It was a lot like really good sex — my mind was free of worry and my body free of any pain.
Suddenly these last few weeks all that changed. No matter how hard I tried, one particular note refused to play. I checked my fingering, tried shifting my breath, but nothing worked. FRUSTRATION and sadness took hold of me, and something that had given me great joy became really upsetting. I had NO IDEA why this was happening, and was sure there was something wrong with me.
Finally yesterday a flute-playing friend helped me out and I learned that the problem was with my instrument–a broken key. I found that if I paid careful attention to that key and pressed a little harder to compensate for the broken pad, the note played clear and beautiful again!
Sex after cancer can be a lot like this experience with my flute. Things shift in your body because of the battle you’ve been waging to survive, and sometimes it can feel like you are broken and will never be able to feel the clear, high notes of good sex in your body again.
But as with my flute, a little shift in how you are doing things can help you hit those ecstatic notes again and experience the beauty of satisfying sex. Partly this is because the MIND is the most powerful sexual organ in your body. Training the mind to think and respond differently in the bedroom is the number one solution to improving your sex life after cancer. Here are my three most important tips to get you started:
1. BREATHE using deep and full breaths. Just like flute playing, good sex requires a lot of air! This helps your body stay in the present moment instead of being afraid that you can’t perform or getting distracted with thoughts about your life.
2. FOCUS on your sexuality. One reason it took me so long to figure out what was wrong with my flute was because I was practicing in the middle of lots of other activities going on and people around me. Going to my room, turning off the phone, and letting go of my other problems helped me to tune in to what did and didn’t work–and to find my own solution.
3. ADJUST your expectations. I realize that a broken flute won’t play the same as a brand new one. I’m ok with that. It may or may not be fixable, but the flute can still make beautiful music. For you as a cancer survivor, it’s important to learn alternative methods of lovemaking so that your whole sex life doesn’t depend on intercourse. While many survivors are able to resume intercourse eventually, it’s important to be willing to explore other options as you are recovering your sexual health.
If you want help with recovering your sexual health, contact me for a FREE CONSULTATION to see which of my programs might be right for you. You can find the application HERE.