They were 2 and 5 years old. I kissed them each on their rosy cheeks. As they hopped out of the car, I had a flood of excitement and anxiety wash over me. “I love you mama” they would say as they shut the car door.
The whole weekend was about to be all mine. What could I possibly do with a whole weekend to myself? This idea was so open, spacious, free – but somehow wrought with slight panic and fear all at the same time.
At times, this fear would feel slightly paralyzing. After being solely focused on mothering these two adorable little rascals 24-7, I just wasn’t sure what to do with 'just me' for a whole weekend.
The transition was always tough. I wanted and needed nothing more than a break and some time for myself, but it took a while for it to settle in and feel okay.
In the beginning, I would head back home, sit, stare, and wait for the uncomfortable to pass. Sometimes, it would be slow, stagnant and I would wish for it to end.
My emotions felt strong, but my appetite – gone. Honestly, I could barely muster a bowl of popcorn for dinner. This post-divorce eating pattern was no bowl of cherries, but rather one that was keeping me tired, depleted, weak, and under-nourished – every other week.
After some serious PTSD, a few dizzy spells, one intense fainting episode, 20 pounds of unhealthy weight loss, and a lot of therapy, I knew something had to change.
I had been reading Bri Maya Twari's book called ThePath of Practice. In her lineage, cooking and feeding oneself was considered one of the most effective paths to healing.
So... this one particular night instead of falling into an old pattern of barely eating while they were gone, I decided to do something different.
I walked through the Whole Foods store picking out “Sue” food.
This was a new thing, and one that seemed to help this awkward moment of transition.
I could do this! Dinner for one.
After a few tries, this new ritual settled in a bit and I began to find myself looking forward to it. A yummy dinner, some beautiful ambiance, soft candle light, a long bubble bath, and time just for me.
My new practice of sensual eating and self-care was working. The transitions were getting easier, my time alone – more comfortable, and from time to time, I would even invite some friends over to join me.
Sensual eating was saving my soul.
The act of cooking for and feeding myself was soul nourishment – physical healing + self-love.
Keep reading to learn about #FoodForeplay and find out exactly what I did that created a shift for my health and healing.
- The most essential ways to use sensual eating to heal your relationship to food
- How to begin your #FoodForeplay practice?
- Dinner for one to dinner for two...
- A bonus Aphrodite meditation
Bringing heightened senses to your mealtime is the perfect place to start. Just like sipping a full-bodied glass of red wine, or nibbling a gourmet piece of dark chocolate, all of our senses become part of the experience.
When we fine dine, part of the experience is the beauty of the food and how it is presented, plated and served. We can too brighten up our daily meals this way with simple attention to color, ambiance, and creative expression.
While we cook, we smell the scents of the spices and nuances of flavors merging with our olfactory sense – our oldest sense. We also are witness to the sounds of the chopping, sizzling, roasting, and blending.
While we eat, we taste each bite, mindfully noticing the merging of all the flavors and textures.
#FoodForeplay is your own personal practice – your own personal recipe for foodie pleasure. There is no right or wrong way – simply your way, your palate, your preference.
When we enjoy food this way – in a ritualized, mindful setting – a mind-body healing emerges. When we tap into our pleasure practices at mealtime, the plated pleasures begin to diffuse into other areas of our lives. When we nurture our whole beings – including all of the senses – we become more satiated. This satiation is not only about our bellies being full, but rather a holistic experience that involves our body, mind, and soul.
How To Start
I always say start small, one meal at a time. Make a date with yourself to begin your #FoodForeplay adventures. Take yourself to the grocery store without a rush or an agenda. Meander through the aisles looking for food that intrigues you, food that calls to you, or food that looks like it would be fun for you to cook.
This could involve trying something new – like visiting an old family favorite, checking out a alluring sensual fruit, or gathering some prepared food that sparks your interest. This is ALL about you.
One of my favorite things to do is create a plate of delicacies that are similar to what you would find on a charcuterie plate. Nothing cooked, no recipe to follow, just a delight for the palate – olives, prosciutto, Humboldt Fog (my favorite cheese), flax crackers, humus, and Spanish almonds.
When Dinner for One turns to Dinner for Two
Sensual eating is nothing new. In fact, food has been a part of foreplay and love making rituals in cultures far and wide since the beginning of time.
Our pleasure starts with us through food, through nature, through laughter, through sensual touch, through scent, and beauty. When we activate our pleasure center, we feel uplifted and we are magnetic to others.
When we know how to receive pleasure, we can better give pleasure.
There is much exploration for us here: When we invite another into our #FoodForeplay an array of things can happen…
- A sensual meal can simply involve sharing in the invigorating of the senses.
- A sensual meal can activate our inner pleasure palace and connection with our beloved.
- A sensual meal can be the co-creation of both partners – a creative and collaborative spark.
- A sensual meal experience can turn on our erotic, lustful, sensual passion.
Everything cooked for our lover is sensual. Love and pleasure infused into our cooking are the strongest aphrodisiacs that exist.
As aromas billow from the skillet, and broth bubbles in the soup pot, we linger in the kitchen glancing sweetly into the eyes of each other, with heightened senses, savoring each tantalizing moment.
Women especially, are inclined towards rituals. Lighting candles, arranging beautiful flowers, setting up a sacred space for all of our meal pleasures to take place. When we slow down and presence ourselves, this #FoodForeplay opportunity can be just the right ingredient to create the erotic and desirous atmosphere to enhance any relationship.
Dinner for 2 can also include cooking together as pieces of lingerie fall to the floor, feeding each other one savory bite at a time, or adding in an array of aphrodisiacs for his and her pleasure to your meal.
You can read my previous article all about the most delicious and delightful aphrodisiacs HERE.
Once your exquisite dinner has been prepared and served, the lingering plated poetry has been relished, the collective artistry can be revealed between two people with a slow, seductive, sensory sensation.
Listen to the Inner Aphrodite Meditation below:
A memoir of the senses
Her breath is like honey spiced with cloves
Her mouth delicious as a ripened mango
To press kisses on her skin is to taste the lotus
The deep cave of her navel hides a store of spices
What pleasure lies beyond, the tongue knows
But cannot speak of it
Kumaradadatta, 12th century