Chicken Or The Egg

My wonderful friend (that I've never met in Real Life), Bachelor Girl, left me a comment yesterday saying my Contact Improv class sounded like a very intimate experience.

Intimate. Was it? This gets into territory that is confusing for me. Is it intimate to play all around someone's body? To touch their sweat, to smell them, to feel their muscles tremble under you as you use them as a balance beam? To offer yourself as that same beam for them to roll upon? To see them smile afterwards?

It is, momentarily, but even with the physical closeness, after class the traditional three foot personal bubble space asserts itself amongst strangers. Which can feel oddly alienating the first time it is experienced. But...we just ...I touched....why are you...Cause perhaps it wasn't really intimate after all. But it was! But it wasn't.

Is it more intimate to spend years exchanging mental and emotional information and never touching? Perhaps ala Heloise and Abelard, to spend a life apart? Is that more intimate?

Perhaps it is all an individual issue, for I have known those who can share the body quite easily without any real sense of commitment, or worry of it. For them, perhaps touch and physical exchange is simply...having lunch? But to share something deeper perhaps is rare.

And then there are those who are free and sharp with their inner selves, expose the self with their words and thoughts and emotions, but for whom the buck stops right at the door of the body.

I am, perhaps, a very confusing combination of the two. And confused, at times, by both.

Of course there are people, healers and body workers, therapists and sex workers who are have figured that combination out, that ability to both blend and separate boundaries, bodies, skin, minds. Intimacy is at once in the eye of the beholder, but also in the shared space between those exploring that space. The best experiences seem to be those where both are on the same page, so to speak.

You know it when you feel it, I suppose. But even feelings can fool you. For me, it's time that builds the trust that allows for both body and mind (no matter the sphere), but even still I'm not sure which comes first.


  1. Count this among your all-time best posts, my dear. It's simply beautiful.


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