Monday, July 6, 2009
I had heard of S Factor for years. Super intimidated, I never thought I'd actually take a class but secretly wished I had the courage. About four months ago, that day came. I was at the Thompson Hotel in Beverly Hills with my friend Val celebrating our mutual friends' US citizenship. A typical LA scene, the room was filled with gorgeous women. I was mesmerized by their beauty but more with their seeming ease and grace in their bodies. Val and I were chatting when suddenly our conversation turned very serious. Despite our gushing compliments about each others outfits, we each disclosed how they were not what they seemed. I was wearing a dress over jeans because I wouldn't dare shows my legs, and she was wearing a long top over jeans that wouldn't button so she had a maternity belt to pull things together! We laughed so hard we nearly fell out of our chairs. But in all seriousness, we were ridiculous. Both of us a size two, recognized we had issues and vowed to resolution.
We started talking about S Factor. Each of us had heard the same things: pole dancing, stripping and lap dancing while wearing practically nothing and six inch stripper heels. You kidding me? I was absolutely terrified but knew this was my answer, because we had also heard how empowering and liberating it was for women. Val and I agreed to try an introductory class. Meanwhile, another one of my close girlfriends Staci had also been invited to try S that very same week by a friend of hers named Janelle who happens to be an S instructor. Kismet. Against world class excuses, the three of us showed up for our intro. Practically wearing burka's, we were dressed head to toe in long sleeved black tee shirts and yoga pants, though I think Staci even added a hoodie.
So there we were, in our very first S class, completely out of control. Not in a good way. We (I can say "we" because we have discussed this in detail), were so in our heads that I'm shocked we didn't walk out. The first time Janelle told us to touch ourselves (I'm talking about an innocent caress on our thighs), I thought I was going to faint. My mind was plagued by thoughts that it was wrong and bad. Sadly, it felt foreign to behave in any manner not consistent with a goofball on a dance floor. That was me my entire life. Okay, I know I've had sexy moments but it's never been my thing to sexualize anything. I blamed it on my mother. I convinced myself that I only looked good when I covered my body because that's what she did.
After the intro, the three of us sat dazed on the floor, unable to move. We found it impossible to believe that we would ever be able to move our bodies sensually, much less take ourselves seriously while doing it. We deflected with humor, made fun of ourselves and tried everything to talk ourselves out of signing up for an eight week class. Val and I were scared but open to at least trying, and really wanted to Staci to join us. That's when she broke down and started sobbing, which made us cry because we related to everything she was saying. As she was sharing painful memories of when she made an unconscious decision not to be sexy and sensual, we just nodded through our tears because we understood. It was easier to be the funny girl, or play the intellect, or even the prude, than to embrace our sexuality. It was time to break free.
It's been eleven months now and we are just about to graduate Level 6. We are blown away by how far we've come. The sense of empowerment was what compelled me to enroll but the impact was underrated. The room is safe. Low red lights, no mirrors and an incredible effusive teacher who inspires us beyond words. We have fun. For the first time in my life I feel tuned into my body and the magic of being a woman. I appreciate my curves, feel comfortable, in fact amazing in my own skin, and love that I'm able to lose myself in a sultry song. I dance in tiny hot pants and bare feet, Val rocks the pole in thigh high fishnets and Staci slays us with her scantily clad moves. If anyone would've ever said that we'd be doing the things we do in class, we would've thought they were high. We love this class. S Factor is for every woman, every where. Even my 62 year old Mother. Just the other night she was at my house and after showing her the S Crawl, she said she wanted to try it. My Mom! There are no words to express my gratitude for the full circle effect.