Experience 2015: Massage!

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Spa

Daughter Laura treated me to a massage when I visited Dallas last month (a belated Mother’s Day gift.) My one and only massage was fifteen years ago, and I’d long forgotten it. This felt like a new experience, so I’m counting it in my Experience 2015 series.

While we were shopping that morning, the spa phoned Laura. “Bad news,” Laura said after the call. “The female massage therapist you were scheduled to see is sick. They want to know if you’re alright with a man.”

“Sure,” I said.

If you’ve had male doctors do all that doctor stuff to you, how intimidating could this be?

When we arrived at the spa, Cemetria, Laura’s massage therapist, pulled her aside. I watched Laura smile and nod. She reported later that Cemetria whispered, “Is your mom still okay with this?”

Score one for Barbara being chill!

Except for needing to tell Eric he was pressing WAY too hard into the area below my shoulder, the massage was excellent. I loved the spa atmosphere too: the herb tea, the lavender oil, the robe, the fountain in the waiting area, the robes and slippers.

Thoughts on the actual massage?  Two impressions remain strong:

  • What does it mean to be in a dimly lit room with a complete stranger who is rubbing you almost everywhere? Although I wasn’t afraid or even creeped out, on some level, this did feel odd/weird/slightly invasive. But there’s an expansiveness to it, too. The touch of a stranger, in a safe situation like this, allows you to focus on your physicality. With no real emotional connection to the massage therapist, it’s you and your body. Your body right now. The age it is. The shape it is.
  • The best parts were when Eric worked on my fingers and toes.He massaged each digit, and in the days since, that sensation has stayed with me, whispering,” All of you is important. All of you can be healed. Every inch. Your whole body. Your whole being.”

Between my cancer and my mom’s death, it’s been a tough year. I’m not complaining, as I’ve been embraced by great love. But something about this year and my massage experience, convinces me to try massage again. That it’s worth the money, now and then. My friends have recommended a massage therapist in our town, a woman, and I’m going to call this week for an appointment.

What about you? Is massage part of your life sometimes, never, or on a regular basis? Is it a simple pleasure or do you think it aids your body and spirit beyond that?

19 responses »

  1. I didn’t put it as nicely as you did but yes, it was neat to have my fingers and toes get the attention they rarely get but richly deserve! : )
    I’ve had a several massages. One was a hot stone massage I treated myself to at a spa (wow! those stones are hot – no false advertising there!). One was a relaxation massage than had me feeling like a gloriously limp puddle. Others have been therapeutic for misbehaving muscles. All have been well worth the money!

  2. Anyone who can afford it should definitely try a massage. Well worth it I think. My first massage experience was with a wonderful lady who just worked on my shoulder and back and finally got it to stop hurting with trigger point therapy after years of off and on pain. Both Joe and I went to see her many times. But then she had to give up her practice and I have been searching for just the right person. I have been to several others–some are just way too rough for me! I truly hate the deep kneading they often do. I like the flat handed type massage–Swedish massage maybe? I tell them all that I need them to be gentle. But then I do want them to do it hard enough to make a difference. I haven’t tried a man. Not opposed to it, but worry they will be a little too rough for me. The toes and finger massage is great, especially when it is followed by getting your feet wrapped in warm cloths! It is not cheap, but is worth getting one if it will fit in your budget. A great present to give someone!!!

  3. I LOVE massages–consider it a real treat when I get one. But I agree. I’d be a little creeped out by a man too! Glad you had this experience. Kudos to your daughter for giving it to you!

  4. You look fabulous. Massage– not really my thing. I can’t sit still. Did one once w/ Lydia at a local hotel spa; otherwise only get them from a sports person when I need back pain care.

  5. Glad it was a good experience for you! I am not into massages just because the few I have had it is difficult for me to relax. Same with yoga and meditation, problems turning off my brain.

  6. I’ve been experiencing some tough times and recently experienced a true reawakening. I’ve had alot of stress in the back of my neck, lower back and some weird tingling in my left hand. The massage I received from a male was amazing. The massage was more than a week ago and I’ve had no pain whatsoever. I signed up to get a monthly masssage since I’m starting a new job on Monday and want to do whatever possible to alleviate stress.
    I love reading your blog as well as the ones your daughters write.

  7. Mother and daughter certainly look alike. My therapists would pound and stretch and massage me, great. Had a massage in India which was strange. The massage was great, but iwas annoyed by the oils and the masseause attempting to undress me. I felt ivigorated after the massage though.

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