I am a trained certified bodyworker/massage therapist. I have been for 10 years now. "Massage" for some people translate to "dirty sleazy, yucky, massage parlor slimey" not the up and up therapuetic healing beneficial gift that it is.
I originally trained to be a massage therapist as a way of earning extra money to help pay adoption expenses. What started out as a means to an end, has turned into a love and passion for bodywork, for helping people feel better, get healthy, regain movement in their joints and muscles. I pray silently over the bodies I am working on. I don't always know what is going on with my clients in their personal lives, but God does. I ask that He bless them, that He give them His peace that surpasses all understanding, that He place a hedge of protection around them and their family, and most importantly if they don't know Him, that He cause people to cross their path that do know and love Him to plant the seed.
Last year I went back to school to further my knowledge with advanced training in massage - I recently graduated from the Neuro-Structural Bodywork program and the Asian Studies -shiatsu, thai, Chi Quong program. This semester I am the assistant for the NSB Program. It is like taking the class again and not having to pay for it, and I to get more hands on experience. Plus since I am the assistant, the instructor demonstrates the techniques on me - Whoo hoo free massages for me!! Bonus!!
I am passionate about bodywork. So much so that I cannot bring myself to charge the going rate for massage. The school I am affiliated with wants its advanced students to sign a contract stating they will not charge anything less than $85 a hour. I just cannot bring myself to sign the contract. If I did charge that much it certainly would help in paying adoptions fees. But God has blessed me with this gift - the ability to minister to people thru massage. I in turn want to bless others with this gift. My rate is less than half what they want me to charge, and if you are family or a close friend, it is even less. I want my clients to be able to afford 2 or 3 massages a month without breaking the family budget. It isn't about the money, it is about using the gift God has blessed me with to bless others.
I have a sweet girlfriend battling cancer right now. Battling hard and kicking cancer's butt!! WHOO HOO YOU GO M!! I've been massaging her for a few months now every other week. She is so sweet, each time I show up she reminds me I don't have to be doing this and I can stop coming any time I want. And each time she says that I smile and say I don't want to stop coming. Other than prayer, this is the only way I can help her battle this ugly disease. Giving her an hour of relaxtion every other week is nothing compared to what she is going thru-chemo and radiation.
At class last night I was a bit shocked at what transpired. Last night was shoulder night. The majority of the class is made up for young females and we do have 2 young males - young meaning early to mid 20s. Most of the female students had sports bras or tank tops on that exposed their shoulders. The other female students that were wearing tshirts were very discreet in keeping their bodies covered up, while their shoulders were exposed. This work was being done with the client sitting on the table, therefore they could not be draped with sheets like you would do in a swedish massage. One female student was not so modest or discreet. She just whipped off her tshirt and was sitting there in her bra for all to see.
Really girlfriend, are you kidding me? HELLO have you ever heard of the M word-MODESTY? There are three men in this class.
My goodness, what is this young girl thinking? What would her parents think if they walked in and saw her sitting there in all her glory? It is great to be comfortable in your own skin and all, but seriously, we all didn't need to see that. Especially the young men in the class.
I'm amazed at how these young women do come dressed to school. In very low cut tank tops, some with no bras, with their goods exposed and hanging out for all to see. Not to mention when they are leaning over a massage table working on their clients. And people wonder why bodywork doesn't sit will with some folks, why it isn't respected by some. Goodness people, put some darn clothes on!
The NSB instructor is awesome. It seems every class he reiterates your clients DON'T WANT YOUR GOODS IN THEIR FACE. [Only he is not so nice about and he doesn't sugar coat it] Cover yourself up. A crew neck tshirt is appropriate clothing to wear to massage, not something that exposes all your cleavage. When there are events coming up where he needs therapists to volunteer, he pointedly tells them they cannot dress like that if they are going to be working with him at these events. They need to cover themselves and dress modestly. He speaks to them from a man's point of view - men are visual creatures, cover yourself up. Yet it doesn't seem to sink in, they don't seem to hear, they don't listen to his wisdom of a business he's been in for 25+ years.
Modesty, where the heck did you go?
Resting in Jesus,