Saturday, August 15, 2015

Musings of a Mindful Massage Girl

Guest Post by Little Red

It's my second night touching men's necks, shoulders and the top of their chests in a strip club. While they enjoy the show, I help them experience all five senses.

I do not have strong hands.

While I try to give them what they ask for when they ask for more pressure, my massages aren't very deep. I'm sure, over time, my hands will grow stronger. Then, all those tense fuckers, will hopefully be able to relax a little and feel the true value of what I'm giving them.

Despite my weak hands, I am getting repeat customers. I am making good money. Not as much as I would make if I was offering a happy ending in a private space. But, I am not offering a happy ending. I am offering loving, platonic touch. I call it mindful massage because there is a purpose to my work. I caress my customers at a deal of a price. Only $5 per song.

Mindful massage, to me, is being present in the massage. Letting my hands be a conduit of caring touch. Everyone needs to be touched in a caring way.

I am incorporating massage "hugs" into my work because I find that most men groan with pleasure just to be held for a brief moment. This may also be caused by sexual arousal, with my clothed breasts pressed against their backs while I reach around and firmly draw my hands across their upper chests.

This is what I offer. Neck massages. My customers don't get happy endings, but they may get erections. I don't ask; they don't tell.

I should have done this a long time ago. I love this work. I feel like I am receiving therapy for my own past few years without loving touch. I'm still not getting loving touch (and I'm too fucking jaded to even be ready for it - probably break down in tears for days) but I am feeling regenerated.

My walls are coming down around my heart. I'm feeling...heartbroken. That is good because it means I am starting to feel again, which is something that has been lost to me for a long time.

But it is also bad because I am carrying their pain home from the bar. I'm told I'm an angel and thanked profusely. Some of them half-think they are in love with me simply because I'm being kind and touching them with care. At home, I must find ways to release the pain of my customers so that it doesn't weigh me down.

“Everyone needs to be touched in a caring way,” I tell them. And I believe it with my whole soul. Most of us are not getting it, even if we are in relationships. My advice to my teenage daughter is to choose partners who hold her in their arms with love.

I am a voracious reader and observer of human behaviour. At the strip club, I see men who are curled in on themselves. Shoulders caving. Strong, youthful, sexy, engaging, funny men who don't feel secure enough to sit upright. And me, insufficient to the task of building them up. Their mothers, wives, and girlfriends already tried it, I hope.

Many of these men have years of insecurity against the brief moments of love and acceptance I can give them while I caress them.

I am constantly asked for more than another song. Do you offer private shows in the VIP booth? Could we go somewhere? Can I take you out sometime? Wanna leave here and fuck? How much to see you somewhere private? Can I offer you a free oil change?

I thank them and tell them no. Oh, okay, I'll take the oil change. And maybe we can go on a date sometime, but don't hold your breath, because my invisible walls are heartily constructed. I promise...I am not the one.

Some men don't want to be touched. I see them flinch away from me when I tell them why I'm there. Others prefer to pay me to touch a dancer. Dancers, with their smooth skin and narrow shoulders, are also a pleasure to massage.

I never knew how much I would enjoy touching people. Today is my day off. But there is a yearning in me to return to the bar. A yearning to touch more men. Spill my love energy into the curve of their shoulders, where they literally and metaphorically carry their burdens. Show them again, that there is salvation. There is caring touch and it heals.

It's healing me. It's helping me to open up again. I am as broken as many of the men I caress, if not more. Some have offered neck massages to me in return, but I fear I am like the flinchers. Can I sit still long enough and relax enough to receive their love energy? I don't know that I can.

But I feel, instinctively, that being the giver will break down the walls around my heart. It won't happen overnight. But it's happening now. Little by little. Each time I pour myself into a mindful massage, I open myself to give and the open door lets a little light in.

I need some light in the darkness of my soul. Things I've suffered in the past few years are things I would never wish on anyone. Not even my ex-husband. I spent so much time forcing myself to be strong. Forcing myself to go on. Forcing myself to smile through pain and pretending to be well. I guess we all have our trials.

Imagine if we could receive caring touch at those most painful and vulnerable moments? Imagine if we could give and receive loving touch when we've hit rock bottom?

Of course, were this foolishly-hoped-for ideology to be the case, business would suffer for sex industry workers. Loving touch is what many of us are here for. We also offer compassion, discretion, and the chance to speak the words that are hidden in the souls of our customers.

If you are a sex worker, you likely know how it feels to watch a grown man cry or hold him in your arms while he shakes with suppressed emotion. Half of what we all need is a person to confide in. The other half is probably to be held while we cry.

Likely this is the reason that many customers hire sex industry workers just to talk. As a dancer, I was paid countless times to sit at my customer's tables and listen to them, offer caring responses, “womanly” advice. They did not want private shows. They wanted community.

I loved being a stripper. It gave me so much. I hated men before I became a stripper. (Blaming them all for the crimes of a few.) I was insecure around suit-and-tie guys. I was jealous of other women. I lived in extreme working poverty.

I don't hate men anymore. I am not intimidated by people with more money than me. I enjoy looking at other beautiful women. Stripping gave me so much. The best part was being paid to dance.

Dancing is in my soul. Maybe that's why I keep coming back.

I have returned to work in the strip clubs every time I had financial needs that weren't being met elsewhere. And I don't just mean stripping. Yes, I returned as a stage dancer after my daughter was born. I returned as a VIP dancer too many times to count. I returned as an event coordinator, a beer-store clerk, a promoter, and a customer.

(Sex industry workers are geniuses at re-inventing ourselves.)

Now, I return as a mindful massage girl. The strip clubs I've worked in are like home to me. This is me returning home. And yet, it is also me beginning a wild ride. A wild, fascinating ride where strangers perform acts of healing through physical, platonic touch in a strip club.

I heal you. You heal me. We connect like humans were designed to do. Isn't it amazing? A chance for redemption. It's just what the soul ordered.

It's what my soul ordered. I am surprised and thrilled to find a chance for healing through my work in a strip club. I hope my service will help others heal as well.

After all, I think it bears repeating that, everyone needs to be touched in a caring way. Let me touch you with my words for now.

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