How would your life be different if you modified rules about right and wrong behaviors?
Walk along with me and get into the space of feeling comfortable with no clothes on. OK? I like pursuing pleasure.
It may be that part of me that doesn't want to miss anything. It may be a decades-long reaction to the part squelched by my early strict adherence to Catholic doctrine. Or it may just be that I savor pleasing sights, sounds, smells, tastes and touches.
I've often wondered how far I dare go in enjoying the happiness that life has to offer. Since my first tentative foray into nudism at Elysium in California, I've never felt any self-consciousness about my or others' bare bodies.
In fact, when my children were pre-teens, we'd go out to a clothing-optional acreage on Woodinville-Redmond Road called the Longhouse. My son and daughter wore swimsuits and clothes; I did not, because of the freedom I felt without clothes. My kids just liked watching videos for hours, swimming, and sleeping in late.
One time I went to a nudist camp with a man introduced to me by a mutual friend. Never having met before, it was slightly awkward when we undressed outdoors, but in my experience, there's much less "meat market" feel among nudists than at bars.
If you haven't luxuriated nude in a hot tub, floated nude in a pool, played volleyball or danced in the altogether, you might not believe me.
I was at a nudist camp for the weekend with a lover once, and I noticed I liked the feeling of "pulling something over on folks." If people anywhere else would go in or out of a tent unclothed, they'd look around first and maybe sneak in or out.
Here, no one had a clue or even cared whether we'd just made love or were going for a nap. The only expectation was that people felt at home in their bodies. There were very fat women there, short men, people reading, sunbathing, picnicking— just people with nothing to prove.
Bare skin makes us all in the same class—no name brands to label us rich, or second-hand clothes to categorize us with a different label. Manners and communication might be giveaways, but people are taken at skin value.
This camaraderie of the topless and bottomless is probably not that different from the connection fellow travelers make on a tour or a cruise, on a hike or a bird-watching trip. Innocent fun!
I'm not suggesting there is no distinction between right and wrong. But the Golden Rule seems to have that covered. Why make any more rules! In fact, why not consider modifying rules, or at least nibbling away at nuisance norms.
I've never seen or experienced abusive or even meddling or thoughtless behavior at nudist functions.
I feel okay about sharing this piece not only because I believe bodies are meant to be enjoyed (and I enjoy the freedom-feeling of being nude) but because I'd like readers who have reservations about nudity to reconsider their perspective.
I believe in a norm that says "no judgment about behavior that causes no harm." I simply hope for a mutual honoring of activities adults choose freely that they find enriching.
Now it's time to ask yourself what makes YOU feel free? What can/ will you do this week to feel that freedom?
If you'd like to feel more open to nudity than you do, you might enjoy my post on Self-Acceptance. I'd love to offer a complimentary no-obligation 30 minute coaching call about any areas you'd like to explore to give you more freedom and fulfillment.
Call me at 206-938-8385 and we'll set a time to explore together. See also this website for excerpts.