LOTSS Desire 2016

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Desire is a magical place.

I flew to Cancun, not really knowing what to expect. I knew there would be about 200 naked people I’d never met. I knew I would be self-conscious about my body. Otherwise, I purposely went in with an open mind and no expectations.

How I see myself in the mirror has been an ongoing problem for me. After having children and taking care of them more than I take care of myself, I feel like I’ve let myself go.

As the van pulled up to the front doors, there was a beautiful man made of muscle and chocolate, gyrating in only a bow tie and the tiniest booty shorts I’d ever seen. This place was not like back home. When we finished checking in and drank deep of the champagne, I turned towards the automatic doors leading to the lobby courtyard and was greeted with someone’s naked ass. I’ll admit it; I almost turned around and ran the other way. It wasn’t the beautiful man dancing and thrusting himself towards me, it was the prospect of having to get naked in front of these people.

Quickly trying to find a familiar face, I glanced around the crowd. Not everyone was naked and then there was Cooper. The man who put all of this together. He seemed so… Human. I’d only spoken with him online and during the Patreon chats after they recorded Swingset, so I hadn’t really put a body with the voice and the few pictures I’d seen. He made me feel better. I started breathing for the first time since we stepped out of the van. I gave my husband’s hand a squeeze and smiled up at him. His smile reassured me that everything was going to be fine.

We walked over to the table where people were making their name necklaces and coding themselves with colored beads. Red, purple, and white for me. Kinky, bi, and extroverted. I began to draw energy from the crowd around me and felt the positivity and wonderful vibrations from them. This was my place in the world. Finally, thirty-seven years and I found that place. Placing my necklace around my neck and helping my husband with his yellow and black beads (straight and introverted), I kissed him and gave a nervous smile. Again, his smile reassured me.

Dylan was making his rounds and walked up to introduce himself. When I told him my name, that voice he accidentally slips into when he’s not trying to seduce someone (but really is) came out, and he said, “Oh!” I’m fairly certain he wouldn’t have had trouble recognizing me if I’d had my shirt off, but the name recognition was enough. Then Cooper yelled over, “I know who you are!” I felt even more at ease.

Introductions flew around and I felt more and more tension releasing. I could tell my husband’s anxiety level was rising, so I made sure to stick by him. We were there to take care of each other first. Belle, the newbie ambassador, showed us around with a quick tour. The maze of paths and construction on a new building were confusing, but I was thankful our room was in a fairly central location. We didn’t need to cross the resort to get to the amazing restaurants, pool, bars, hot tub, and disco. Everything was right there for us. We could almost literally roll out of bed and right into the pool.

After lounging in the lobby courtyard and finally removing some clothing, our room was ready. It was a garden view and the smallest available, but it was home for the week. It was warm and inviting. We unpacked our suitcases and left to seek out dinner.

It took me the entire next day to be more comfortable in my own skin, but I noticed other women who were shaped just like me. I felt more and more comfortable. After many compliments and kisses, I wasn’t aware of my body image issues anymore. I no longer walked around gingerly, trying to stay out of the way. I began to take up my space. I deserved that space, after all, didn’t I? I began to assert myself and facilitate some fun for myself and my husband. It wasn’t something we’d planned on, but we took what happened in stride.

I feel like Desire transformed how I see myself. I no longer look in the mirror and see all the stretch marks and imperfections. I see a body that deserves to be appreciated and loved. I see a body that doesn’t deserve to be judged and ridiculed for being less. I’ve finally stopped hearing the words of my own mother, every fashion magazine, and every jerk out there who thinks it’s okay to shame a woman for having a body that isn’t perfect. The fact that I have a body makes me perfect.

Desire made my relationship with my husband grow even more. I experienced so many firsts with him and because of him. He pushed me when I needed it. He showed me I can take up my space and be myself in this beautiful paradise of my people. I am forever changed, but still the same. I’m still a mom to my children and I still live in a very conservative area, but I see myself differently. I looked at my naked form in the mirror this morning and turned sideways, really seeing what others see, and I smiled for the first time in years. That’s me. That’s who I’ve always been. I just never saw her before. I never saw what people really saw, only the distorted view of society.

The welcoming manner of those 200+ people rings in my ears and I really see me. Sexual, beautiful, and wanted.

Forever changed for the better, but still the same.

Marla-Marie Dean

Author of Behind Closed Doors

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