I am still going to have the torture massages done. I just got back from my sixth one. Yes, it still hurts like a son-of-a-bitch. But I think it is helping. I figured I didn’t really give much detail last time I blogged about it, so here we go. Avert your eyes if you don’t like nudity or physical violence.
I go each Tuesday and Thursday to this tiny little shop on the third floor of a building in Migeum. I would have never found it on my own. I ring the doorbell and the very nice, smiling lady (who actually looks pretty shocked that I keep coming back – that’s what happens though when you make me pay up front) lets me in. I am directed to a plastic bed and provided a basket and a pair of paper panties. Then they usually stand around and wait for me to change. I’m a lot less modest since being in Korea, let me tell you! So, I get undressed and lie face-down on the bed. Then the torture begins.
Usually, there are two of them working at the same time and I’m very busy trying to figure out at all times who is actually causing me more pain; the one doing my back or the one doing my legs. The worst is if they both use The Machine at the same time.
I’ve yet to get a really good glimpse at the machine, but I can tell you what it does (sort of). Think of a reverse-massage… instead of pushing into your body, they are pulling it out. That would be why I had so many bruises – they are sucking on my skin with this machine. I find it fascinating that I don’t get bruises everywhere (or even in the same places every time) even though the suction seems to be the same intensity. I have bruised heavily on my upper back, along my spine, and under my arms (yup… they massaged my freaking armpits), but the rest of my body has only bruised lightly. I wonder why?
I asked Ellie (the Korean coworker who sent me to this torture-chamber in the first place) what the hell was up with the bruises. She took one look and said matter-of-factly, "Oh, that is just your bad blood." I think the idea is that they are pulling out the oxygen-depleted blood from my muscles. That may be why it hurts so freaking bad.
In addition to The Machine, they also give me a more traditional massage, although it is more deep-tissue than any I have had before in my life. This wee Korean woman works her elbows in under my shoulder blades. The pain is so wonderful that it is sickening. Sickening, but interesting. Maybe that is why I keep going back – I cannot believe how much tension there is.
And it IS releasing the tension. My neck muscles were rock hard when I first started going and they have relaxed considerably. I also feel like all my muscles are working together more like a team now.
There is another drawback (other than the intense pain while I am getting massaged)… I have a theory that the massage is giving me nightmares, because I’ve been having them more often than not lately. And I don’t think it is because of stress – I have been stressed before (and much more so than this!) and not had nightmares. And I mean BAD ones. The other night I dreamt that I could wiggle one of my bottom teeth with my tongue and – oops! – it fell out. So I tried pushing on other teeth and they fell out too. So I went to the bathroom and started seeing if I could pull them out. I could. They all came out easily and without pain. I wasn’t very happy about that dream. Mostly, it was a nightmare because I felt in the dream that I should stop pulling out my damned teeth and see a dentist before I did too much damage but I wouldn’t stop. Ick!
Sorry. I digress. Back to my theory. I do believe that our bodies hold memories. And I wonder if this deep tissue massage isn’t working out some old, undealt with issues. Thus the nightmares. I’ll let you know if the nightmares stop when the massages stop.
One final note: I was talking about these massages with a guy-friend who asked if I was ever aroused by them. Fair enough… I do strip down to paper panties and they massage everywhere (yup, including my chest) where the panties ain’t. And they don’t really respect the panty-boundry much either. But I don’t find it arousing in the freaking least – it is two chicks doing it and it is PAINFUL! Most of the time I am gritting my teeth, trying not to call out in pain or punch someone in the face. I think even if it was a dude doing the massage (after all, I’m not usually aroused by ladies under any circumstances) it wouldn’t turn me on. Although Lindsey has teased me about being a masocist (and I am, in some ways), pain is not one of the ways I get off.
And on that note…