The Best New Year’s Kiss Of My Life.
“Hey babe,” I hear from the hallway as I sit soaking in the tub, staring at candlelight. Those words both startle me and soothe me like nothing else.
And the fact that I can be so soothed by such a statement weirds me out.
There is so much expectation in that statement. To show up, belong to, hold, trust, turn to first and only.
I never thought I would be someone’s babe.
I always really tried to be.
For a long time I was banging at doors that were shut in my face, asking that they be gentle with me, let me in, let me stay for just a bit.
Never did I think one would carry me in and beg me to stay, tell me that he needs me.
Being needed. It blows my mind. I always felt like some wild animal that no one could really love, at least not for the long haul.
Can I stay?
Those words fill my mouth so eagerly and I do not know where to put them with a man who wanted me to stay since the moment he met me.
I do not know where to put my desire for pain, suffering, for love to be hard, to be a battle, to be a begging ground where one person always has the upper hand, or is looking away to someone else.
I do not know how to be fully seen, without some discomfort.
I don’t know who ever said love had to be hard, some kind of painful roller coaster or merry-go-round, but I still carry that memo with me.
Especially in moments that are the most tender, whole, kind, accepting.
Don’t you want to fight? Don’t you want to argue? Don’t you want to push my goddamn buttons and make me want to call my mother and cry for a few hours while I analyze the last twenty million things you said?
Aren’t you bored? Disgusted? Annoyed with my lack of pretense? Don’t you want me to make this harder for you, seem like I don’t care, be a bored mystery, like everyone else?
Learning how to be in a mutually loving relationship, without lies, smoke screens, with everyone showing up and communicating exactly who they are and what they want, is terrifying.
There is so much more to lose.
And who knows how to receive this kind of love, adoration, praise?
Every day I have to breathe into my capacity to receive desire, love, genuine compassion. Otherwise I can easily shrug it off, be annoyed, and privately wish that I had to work a little harder.
Ultimately this type of love forces me to look at my own worthiness, how much I believe I deserve.
I have to work, sometimes harder than other times, to let this love look into my eyes, and fawn over my entire being.
You know, it’s just like me, to get exactly what I want, and then find something I don’t like about it.
Now that I have this ultimate mind-blowing love, I want independence, I want space, I want to know who I am and adore what I see, not because someone loves me, but because I can’t get enough of all the things that make me, me.
Now that I have this steady place to return to, I want to get the fuck out. I want to explore and taste and feel the entire world for myself, because for once, I believe that I’m worthy of this level of ecstatic joy and exploration.
For once, I do not want to be someone’s babe. I want to be my own babe.
I have been a serial monogamist my entire life. As Kevin Hart says, “Women think every guy is their soulmate, like, ‘Oh my God, you wear jeans? Me too!’”
That was my life.
I could find one reason to stay, when there were a million pointing me to the door. I would forget my passions, my goals, and would simply just drop everything, if the guy I was dating showed the slightest bit of interest.
I was terrified of being alone. I was terrified of what it meant if I did not have anyone wanting me, desiring me, calling me. I didn’t know how to desire myself, so I fought too long and hard in relationships that were long dead.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that I don’t want to be married anymore or lose the best person I’ve ever met. The angel love I get to hold every morning, every night, and sometimes twice on Sundays.
No way. I wouldn’t trade this for the world. But I’m taking a lot more space than I used to. If I want to go on a trip alone, I go. If I want to spend eight hours alone at the bookstore, I will. I am now building up other relationships in my life that took the back burner, like my sacred tribe of women.
I’m building up me.
I’m more territorial about who I am and what I want. I let all that romantic mushy sexy music, like Fade Into You by Mazzy Star, be about my soul. It’s no longer sexy for me to put someone else’s whims before my own dreams. Melting in and fading away is for butter only, not for my soul.
So to sanctify my deepest desire of becoming my own babe, soul mate, my most wild tender lover, I did something weird on New Year’s.
I had the most delicious, toe-curling, I-want-to-spin-right-now-like-Maria-on-the top-of-the-mountain-in-Sound-of-Music kiss, of my entire life.
It was steamy. I’d say the best one yet. It shot energy up and down my spine, then to every inch of my body. I almost screamed with delight. It was long anticipated, and I just melted right into it. I looked deep into the eyes of my One True Love, and I felt this immense joy well up from within.
I’m talking about the kiss I gave my own reflection, just minutes after 2016 came dancing in.
I looked deep into my eyes, and spoke the promises I have written on my heart, the words, the truth, that is holding 2016 with such loving arms.
I kissed the only person I need to impress this year, the only one I need to answer to.
I spoke my promise to be the protector of my dreams, the midwife, the lover. To be the one breathing life into those dreams every single day, no matter the weather externally or inwardly.
Before this year gets away from you, stop everything you’re doing, and go speak passionately all the ways you will love that beauty in the mirror who should win a medal for being so damn brave, strong, for seeing you through it all. Put on deep red lipstick and smooch your reflection.
Leave those kisses there. When something burns your heart…
Return to your Kiss.
When you’re not sure of what to do next, or who is on your side…
Return to your Kiss.
When you’re aching to be touched…
Return to your Kiss.
When you’re bursting with joy and can’t wait to tell someone about it…
Return to your Kiss.
Return unto yourself over and over.
May you always be arriving at the shores of your deliciousness, and may you be fully satisfied.
To an incredibly satisfying, sensual New Year. The one where you’re the best damn lover you’ve ever had.
Maria Palumbo is a healer. She is a dancer in the dark. She lovingly guides women in the retrieval of their own souls through coaching, workshops, and community development. She celebrates freedom from shame in body, mind, and soul. Her work is fun and delicious, making the journey of healing gorgeous and satisfying, like a kiss under the Full Moon. Fall in deep love with your soul by connecting with her on Facebook or at her website.