When you make love mindfully, not every moment is blissful and magical.

Last night I was having sex.

Not just sex – sex with a guy.

A beautiful, slow, lovemaking session.

It was really great and pleasurable, until at one particular moment when a tiny shift in position created a burning sensation in my vulva. Within seconds, my mind was recalling a horrible article which I read a few days prior to that.

Revolting. Disturbing to the bone.

What do I do?

I had to stop.

The worst thing you can think about while having sex.

Dr. Denis Mukwege was awarded the Peace Nobel Prize laureate for 2018.

The winners this year are fighting sexual violence, and as I was curious to learn what Dr. Mukwege does, I found an article about his work. The article went into some of the details of the atrocities he sees every day as part of his work.

Reading the article left me gutted.

I literally sat on the kitchen floor, feeling nauseated and disgusted. Shocked and petrified.

I just cannot understand how any human being can do such horrendous things to another being.

At the end of the article, the journalist was describing how calm Dr. Mukwege looked, and that his eyes vibrated kindness and empathy. Apart from saving his patients’ physical bodies, he was listening to them, providing a shoulder for them to cry on and a voice for them to express what they could not bring themselves to.

I admire his ability to be so strong, loving and accommodating while facing these atrocities.

I feel so privileged to be living in a part of the world in which I don’t have to fear these horrendous acts.

And I regretted reading about them, as I knew that now I cannot take this knowledge out of my system.

I cannot delete this from my mind.

And it comes back in the least appropriate times, as these things often do.

Like, last night.

Stopping in the middle of things.

I can’t tell you how many women tell me they can’t stop their mind from thinking and racing during sex.

I wrote about letting go in bed here and here.

So I thought I would share with you what I did.

When a thought that is so inappropriate and uncalled for disturbed my moments of pleasure.

I stopped.

I told my guy: We have to stop. I have really horrible thoughts.

And we stayed motionless for a bit. We just laid there.

I kept focusing on my body and on my breath.

I can’t recall how long it took, but soon enough, I was back in the present moment and my attention returned to the oh-so-lovely sensations in my body.

It wasn’t always so easy for me.

For years I was unable to reach a climax with a partner because I was constantly trying to get one.

Then, slowly and gradually, I shifted my understanding of what sex is all about until it became simply about connecting. To my body, to my partner, to pleasure.

And these days having sex is so precious that letting go mostly happens by itself. I don’t need to effort it.

I didn’t have an orgasm last night.

At least, I don’t think I did…

You also might not believe me when you read what I’m about to say until you experience it yourself, but that’s OK.

I felt so fulfilled and so satisfied at the end of our lovemaking session last night, that it occurred to me that I might not be as satisfied if I did have one.

I know, I know! It sounds a bit far-fetched. Do I really prefer to not have an orgasm than to have one? And the truth is, when I examine my own experience, yesterday after sex I felt alive. I felt energetic and loving. Satisfied beyond anything I could try to explain in words.

Even though it wasn’t perfect – it actually was.

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