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Thursday, September 13, 2012

Intimacy

Intimacy: A close, familiar, and usually affectionate or loving personal relationship with another person or group.

Today, I've been going down memory lane. And it's memory lane which has inspired my post today.

I'm going through a life transforming experience and it's called The Power of Sensuality. I don't mean to tease you, but right now it's sacred so I can't spill all the beans......but, what I can tell you is that I've been forever transformed and I will be a better Woman, Mother, Wife, Friend, Artist, Writer, Designer, Business Woman and Mentor after this experience. So, stay tuned.......In the meantime, The Power of Sensuality is nudging me towards more Intimacy in all areas of my life, hence a trip down memory lane.

Today, my trip down memory lane took me to a very special woman named Gabi.

Gabi is a very special friend of mine.  She's German and at the time, she lived in Accra (she's moved back to Germany now). She owned a Spa that I used to go to back at home in Ghana. It was in the 'back house', like a tiny guest house at the back of her house. No more than a total of 300 square feet. I used to call Gabi's Spa my healing place. Even though I worked at home and had most of the 'services' I needed brought to me at home; massages, manicures, pedicures, hair dressing........all in the comfort of my own little boudoir, I would save money and drive through traffic, one and a half to two hours to Gabi's place. And these escapades were usually with my BFF Moiselle. (Another former BFF, "My Exotic Orchid", introduced me to Gabi, and that's a story for another day!)

Upon arriving at this tiny space, the scent of sweet candles is what would greet us. Along with that came a glass of wine and if it was a special occasion, Champagne, to get us in the mood. Gabi took care of facials, foot and hand treatments herself and she usually hired a masseuse (the best in town!!!!) to give us our massages. It was a small space, two beds in different corners of the room, a wooden soaker tub and a shower. Two armchairs and a shelf of books, CDs and products, that was it. Candle light was usually the only lighting....dark, and warm.

It was Intimate.

A facial with Gabi was a heavenly experience. She had the softest hands and her products were divine. But above all was the person herself. During a facial, we would talk, really really talk. We had deep conversations which would simply start with "how are you doing?', and just like that, I would open up and tell her what was going on in my life. Major decisions were made on Gabi's facial bed. The confidence to get married in a very complicated situation, she gave me the strength and fanned my faith. The decision to leave everything I had ever known and move to the USA to be with my husband and start a new life. Two of the biggest decisions of my life, made with Gabi's kindness, compassion and wisdom.

If I was alone, it would be a facial first and then a massage. If I was with Moiselle, we would take turns in any order we felt like. After our massages, we would fall asleep like little babies. And then after the massage came a long soak in the wooden tub, Champagne or wine on a table nearby with again, the sweetest smelling products. And then a shower. Sometimes, we would add a foot and hand treatment, and to have Gabi's soft hands taking care of you.....words cannot describe the feeling.

Again, Intimacy.

Once we were done with all the good stuff, we would dress up, no make up and then be ushered into her home. She had such a beautiful home, a truly beautiful and warm home. It was time to eat, it was a feast! In the most beautiful settings! And it wasn't like a service that was being provided, it was like having lunch or dinner at your best friend's house, sometimes there would be extra guests, and sometimes it would be just us.

I miss those times with all my heart! I miss Gabi so so much!

But above all, my experiences with Gabi have inspired me! Inspired me and remind me on a daily basis that as I create this next chapter of my life, the word 'Intimacy' is going to be one of my guiding principles. In my next phase, it is my strong desire to bring Intimacy to everything that I offer. Sometimes, when I'm not in tune with my deepest self, I scratch my head and I wonder, how am I going to bring Intimacy into a painting, into a design, into a service I provide. But my higher self knows better and I know that I  just need to get still, put all fear and judgement out of the way, and I will be shown the way.

I have to say, after my experiences with Gabi, the bar has been raised to impossible heights! No one has come close. When I drag myself to get a pedicure or something at one of those places....you know what I mean, it's such a lifeless mechanical experience, but, the million dollar question is....Isn't that what life has become?

 I'm putting my Economist hat on here......but I believe this is what is wrong with the world. Especially in women's services. Everything is being robotized and systemized, and yes, it's efficient, but it's not for our highest good. The economists talk about certain jobs which are gone and will never come back. I agree. But I also believe that anyone who creates a business or provides a service and brings a certain level of Intimacy into the service will never go without work. The human experience is based on Intimacy. I am a woman and I KNOW that women are yearning for Intimacy, for compassion and for kindness in these very challenging times......ok, my hat comes off here.

So, I hope you enjoyed this little trip down memory lane, there will be more to come. Above all, I hope you've been inspired to bring some Intimacy into your life. (And I know this wasn't what you were expecting when you read the title!)

I also aspire to bring Intimacy into my writing here on my blog.

And of course, I couldn't leave without some images to inspire Intimacy in your life today. As you may know, or not know, I love flowers, and I always say, if flowers were a language, they would be the only language I would speak!

Here are some stunning images form Joyce Tenneson and her book of amazing Intimate images of flowers.

Enjoy!












A Demain!



3 comments:

  1. Beautiful piece, Shirley. Thanks for sharing and for inspiring. I miss the times when you and Moiselle would stop over at my house from Gabi's. Of course the most amazing thing I found about Gabi was that in the midst of her own challenges as a woman, she did not allow herself to be crushed or to hate, but decided to forgive, and channel her energy into providing peace and beauty to other women. That takes a lot of strength and I trully admire her. And to you, you don't forget all that intimacy and love you injected into your own client service back in Ghana..you raised the bar for us too and now we miss having a designer, stylist, artist in our lives who makes us feel the way you made us feel..we're hanging in here with you waiting for you to re-emerge, better than ever before...love u lots..

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