Yielding to my desperate need to be touched by human hands, I scheduled a last-minute massage this evening.  The tiny young girl packed a punch with her deep-pressure moves, and I confess I cried a couple of times.  But my shoulders feel looser, and I’m inhaling the smell of stress-relieving essential oils every time I take a breath.
I’m stressed out, and I so want to be held by strong arms while I breathe the upset away.  
I’m being cared for in other ways which really do perk me up and bring a smile to my heart, but can anything really substitute for touch?  Words and looks can tide me over for a while.  A loving thought expressed can feel like an embrace.  A smoldering stare can feel like foreplay.  Now I just need to find something that feels like sex.  A hard workout?
I realize clearly that I’m scared.  I’m in the Fear, which of course is preventing me from feeling all of the Love.   I hate that. 
Actually, I’m more than afraid right now.  I’m so terrified I can’t even let myself imagine the thing that’s scaring me.  I can only let my thoughts dance around the perimeter until it exhausts me and sends me to bed in a funky funk.
Today I did 5 miles on the treadmill after a shoulder workout.  I found myself fixated on the red STOP button on the machine in front of me.  STOP being afraid.  STOP deriving my value from others.  STOP having a pity party.  Don’t STOP pressing on toward the goal for the prize.  STOP and breathe. 
I’m really trying to get my groove back. 
I think there’s one last part that needs a good rub tonight. 

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