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Reclaiming My Voice

by Lily D

From a young age, I was told my childhood was a really good one, and I believed wholeheartedly that it was true. I was smack in the middle of five kids, and in a family that big with an authoritarian father, you learn survival techniques quickly. As a “daddy’s girl,” I was eager to conform and obey. Believing whatever I was told made a lot of sense to me. Fortunately, I have a strong survivor in me, and while I quickly learned the importance of not speaking up or voicing my opinions as a girl, I always had a rebellious streak.

As a young adult, I entered the dating world ill-equipped. My parents were deeply conservative, and my mom barely had “sex talk” with me. Because I was homeschooled, I also missed out on public school sexual education. Two days before my 21st birthday, I lost my virginity in a date rape situation. I didn’t know what was happening, and then I froze up in shock. Despite this, I went on to continue the relationship, got pregnant three months in, and then married the guy and had two more kids with him. 

Discovering OM Practice

Through my post-divorce self-exploration, I began dating a man who introduced me to the OM practice through a video on YouTube. I was feeling a bit adventurous at that point, but my religious Christian beliefs had me feel awkward about turning anything with genitals into a meditation practice. I actually laughed when I first saw the video, thinking my boyfriend was joking about trying OM. When I realized he was serious, I told him, “Well, I’ll try anything twice! Once to see what it’s about, and the second time to see if I like it!”

The first time was intense. The pressure was too much, and I didn’t know I could ask him to stroke more softly. When he told me that I could tell him how to touch my clitoris, I felt a wave of shyness. My husband had been intensely sensitive about me guiding him around my body, getting angry, or quitting if I asked him to touch me differently. The thought of telling another adult (especially a man) what to do felt completely foreign in my body.

Over the next few months, I tried OMing several more times. It felt like the adjustments would get caught in my throat anytime I wanted to have a different stroke. Even while knowing it was a part of the practice, I would feel a giant lump growing tight in my throat while the thoughts would get louder in my head. Go right. Please move to the right. MOVE RIGHT! It would take me two or three minutes of wanting the adjustment before I would get up the courage to say it.

Finding My Voice

I started to notice that I would have that same feeling when I wanted to say something in my relationship but was afraid of disrupting something. I noticed my inability to speak popping up all over, but it wasn’t happening more than before; I was just noticing it more.

Eventually, it felt like something in me thawed out, and I was making the adjustments just seconds after I felt them. I began to experience the ability to say what I thought and felt in real-time, and I asked for what I needed and wanted more often. I started to take more control of the narrative around my life, and this opened up a deep well of healing. 

Empowerment and Healing

Four and a half years later, I’ve seen the incredible power I’ve cultivated through this practice in so many ways, but most of all through reclaiming my voice and my narrative. I have the confidence and sureness in myself and my personal agency to allow myself to feel safe within a full range of emotions and to express them without fear to the people I love. That is an incredible gift!

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