WOMEN ON TOP 017: Monica Meilin Ford
Women On Top is an interview series that features everyday women from around the globe and asks them straight-to-the-point questions about their sexuality. Women On Top aims to inspire and grow a community of women who learn and grow from each other's sexual stories and wisdom. This week I interviewed Monica about making love as a spiritual practice, her polyamorous relationship, natural childbirth as a sexual experience, and what she looks for in her lovers.
Currently, I identify with being heterosexual and bi-sensual, meaning I desire to share love and sensuality with both men and women.
Occupation: I am a dancer, a movement coach, and a mother.
What was the message your mother gave you about sex as a little girl?
I don't remember ever directly receiving a message from my mother about sexuality. My parents had a very passive way of dealing with uncomfortable subjects, in that they didn't, but rather left it up to the Catholic Church to give me the message that sexuality is sinful and something to be ashamed of.
I remember feeling guilty when I would even think about exploring my sexuality, looking at my own vagina in a mirror was too unbearably shameful to even consider, let alone touching myself. Even when I got to the age of having and enjoying sex, there was always an underlying sense of guilt that went along with it.
Can you identify a moment when you feel you officially entered womanhood?
I can think of two moments.
The first was when I entered into my first polyamorous relationship with a man who is now my husband and father of my child. Opening up myself to this new dynamic forced me to look at my wounding around my relationship with myself and other women. I realized very quickly that I was still holding onto the old paradigm of competition and scarcity. I would constantly find myself in the "if her than not me" mindset. Moving past these wounds was a huge turning point. For the first time in my life, I feel a sisterhood with women, I gained empathy, and my ability to love myself and love others has grown tremendously. I moved out of the victim mentality and finally felt in control of my life and fully empowered. This, to me, is what it means to be a woman.
The second moment was the birth of my son. There is no other experience that a woman can have that will connect her more deeply with her womanhood. I have never felt more in tune with my sexual centre than during birth. If chosen to do naturally, I believe it can be the most sexual experience a woman will ever have! It's a chance for a woman to be totally connected to her own body, to take charge of her experience and feel fully empowered. I have never so strongly felt my own divine feminine potential. The ability to create life! - that is what makes me a woman.
How important do you believe it is to embrace your sexuality as a woman?
It is probably the most important work a woman can do. Unfortunately, most woman end up with a huge load of sexual wounding by the time they are an adult. Not necessarily because of any traumatic experience, but simply because of cultural and social programming. There is so much shaming and misinformation around sexuality for women. Embracing my own sexuality is a recent thing for me, and even now I still find myself getting stuck in old thinking patterns of shame and guilt. Understanding and healing your sexual wounds is some of the most important work a woman can do. It is the path to personal empowerment, knowing your own self worth, and ultimately existing in a state of freedom and self love.
How important is self-pleasure to you?
Pleasure is my birthright!!! If I can't bring myself to a state of orgasmic pleasure, how can I expect anyone else to do it for me? Self-pleasure is about taking charge of my own experience and not depending on others to create the feelings I desire, understanding that I am my first and primary partner. Every moment is my choice on what energy I want to be in. If I want pleasure in my life, then at every moment, I choose the path that will make me fall in Love with myself.
What are three things you love about your body (that perhaps you've struggled with in the past)?
I love my body's strength. I love how adaptable it is. And currently, I love its ability to sustain another human being's life (my son).
I have always struggled with body image, never feeling satisfied, never quite loving it the way it is. When I was pregnant, my whole concept of my body shifted. Before, I had always seen it as an obstacle and an object that challenged me and caused me pain. During my pregnancy, I started to understand the magic of the female body and how I am blessed with the amazing ability to hold and create life! I gained a new respect for my body and for the first time in my life, was able to really honor it.
What are three things you look for in a lover?
My husband and I practice conscious polyamory. With any lover I take, it is important to me that they understand and celebrate the dynamics of my partnership with my husband. I want to feel safe and comfortable to be totally honest and open with them, and know that they will do the same.
Otherwise, the absolute most important thing for me is having a deep energetic connection. Before words or actions, I want to feel magnetic energy.
What inspires you to make love and enjoy sex (either alone, or with a partner)?
Making love is dancing. I love connecting with another on an energetic level and making love is just that. It is a passionate dance in which we swirl and coalesce our energies, becoming deeply united in love and pleasure. Making love is also a spiritual practice. It is a meditation on being totally engulfed in the present moment and a chance to become absolutely focused on only my physical sensations, freeing myself from the thinking mind.
Do you have any particular women in your life who inspire you to be a sexually empowered woman?
I strive to only surround myself with people who inspire me! I am proud to say that my community of friends consists of many fiercely embodied and empowered women who are constantly inspiring me to grow.
What rituals do you have for self-care, self-love and self-pleasure?
I try to maintain a regular practice of sitting and movement meditation. I have a few mantras that I love, focused on releasing shame, fear, and obstacles. I have designed a movement meditation which I use to release stuck energy and open up my energetic channels, specifically focusing on my creative/animal centre.
I write, I play music, I get out into nature, I dance, I spend time with people I love, and I eat organic whole plant-based foods. I have made a commitment to myself to live the life that I desire, so really everything I do is centered around self-care, pleasure and love.
How can people connect with you?