There was a group of us getting close while hanging out in some rag-tag bar. Second-hand chairs and a floor where you just might want to watch where you stepped.
We were celebrating birthdays and holidays as a group. We cooked dinner for each other and of course we drank like there was no tomorrow.
As May was rolling around a friend asked me – “Whatcha getting me for my birthday?”
Honestly I had no clue.
I’m good at giving gifts but I was stumped.
It was clear she was “into me” and I wasn’t really attracted to her. She was just a friend and she knew it but that never stopped us from play flirting and teasing each other.
She backed down a little and said,
“Well tell ya what…you can avoid shopping for my present if you would just…strip for me!!!”
Well I thought about it for a whole two seconds and responded,
“Sure. Why not.”
So there I was, about five or six weeks away from having to strip down to my boxer shorts in front of everybody.
I played the part.
Watched my diet, did some extra exercising, and even went to the tanning beds on a regular basis to rid myself of the winter paleness.
The night came closer and with each day I avoided thinking too much about it.
I didn’t practice – well just a little.
I watched a couple of male strip shows on the internet but of course since I’m not into guys, I didn’t pay much attention.
As the event day finally arrived I picked out a few songs and just before I was set to go on managed my way into the bathroom.
It was a cold May evening and the last thing I wanted was my manhood to shrink down to unnoticeable bump in my pants if you know what I mean.
And I did it!
Just like that and never thought twice about it.
And never thought twice about doing it again.
Now you would think I did it completely for her.
But I didn’t.
You might assume I did it to impress some other girl – but I didn’t.
Or maybe even to reap the benefit of respect and admiration I got for so long after from men who there or at least heard about it.
But I didn’t.
So what would possess a man like me to strip down in public?
Sure I was muscular but I’m not really stripper material. Kind of short, not much weight around.
Although I will admit I am quite a sexy dancer who knows what a beat is.
It wasn’t like it took that many balls to overcome any physical self-esteem issues. I got over that long before that night.
I was actually quite proud of my body.
Thinking back now I realize I may have blown it off so casually but it was actually a life-changing event just not in the sense most would assume.
You see for the first time in my life I wasn’t a personality. I wasn’t trying to impress anyone with my words.
I wasn’t relying on my good old nice ways which I believed would eventually would work but never really did.
For the first time in my life, my mid-thirties nonetheless, I was just a body who was using all his sexual movements to attract and I wanted her to enjoy every last-minute of it.
After all it was a birthday gift.
You see underneath my younger shabby clothes and then my “grown-up” attire I was always in great shape.
In fact I entered a best body beach contest in my teams although many saw it as a joke.
And it kind of was.
It wasn’t to overcome some fear of being half-naked in public AND being in the spotlight.
In all honesty I wasn’t even that nervous.
But I did have another fear which I avoided facing my entire adult life and me stripping was my way of overcoming years of hiding behind a nice guy mask.
I believed women should like me for who I am and not my body.
I never showed it off.
I always hid it the best I could and then would modestly push it aside when a woman would notice.
Not that I was ashamed of it but because to me, being sexual, or turning a woman on just by how I looked was not something I ever wanted.
But then I realized something so important and it wasn’t that I could “use” my body to get things from women…
It was that no matter what happened, whether my body attracted a woman first, or if she couldn’t care less, my body was, is, and will technically always be a part of me.
This may sound obvious but when you look deeper I was hiding something from women.
Some of you hide from your body because you’re ashamed of it. I hid because I was proud of it.
Either way how could I ever be “real.” when I was masking a piece of my sexuality as if it was something to be frowned upon or guarded or held off until a later time.
I fear there’s lots of women (and men) in one way or another are hiding something from the opposite sex and releasing it may do some harm or it may do some good, or it may not do anything at all.
But you must admit…
If you’re hiding behind something, anything, because of a fear or a hope to be seen differently in someone else’s eyes – forming a real genuine attraction and then a bond or connection after, can never fully engage until “that” time you’re ready to release your information.