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My First Pull Under an Equinox Moon

It was a beautiful Friday morning as my lover and I caravanned out to the site for our weekend Equinox festival. I was so looking forward to getting away from the city, burying my toes in hot sand and perhaps swimming with some dolphins. Oh yeas, there was also the delicious possibility of doing my first pull. 

Three weeks prior to the festival, my husband Murray (who's the same person as my lover, so don't get confused, dear readers) asked me if I would consider doing a pull with him. I had seen him do two out of his three suspensions and I truly wasn't interested in doing one myself. But the idea of doing a pull intrigued me for a variety of reasons. I said yes, provided I could change my mind at the last minute. I seem to always have to leave myself an "out". He readily agreed. 

As we got closer to the Equinox, I started getting nervous. "What should I expect?", "Just how much will this hurt?" and "What if I pass out?" were all questions floating around in that space between my ears. So I started doing some research. I came to BME and read stories and looked at pictures to try and get a feel for what I was planning on doing. I went to suspension.org and posted to the forum my questions and concerns. Several people gave me advice and encouragement. Then there was nothing to do but wait until the moment of truth. Could I actually do this? Would I be able to go through with it? 

Let's go back to the beach and the Equinox festival. We were having a great time being in nature, communing with like-minded spiritual friends and basically getting toasty tan. On top of all the fun and wonder, I was still nervous. There was so much going on in my head.  

On Saturday night I fell asleep around midnight. An hour later the piercing team had arrived and Murray woke me up. "I'm cold" I complained, trying to calm my suddenly frantic heart and using any excuse to do so. But I got out of the tent and went to say hello to everyone who had arrived. I was scared. I'm still not quite sure why but I'm sure the fear of being in pain and not being able to deal with it was part of it. 

We went down the beach away from the main area of the festival. Many of the people were still up. Some of which were dancing around a fire and others who were participating in a sweat. We picked a beautiful spot by the water with the bright moon beaming down upon us. It was truly the perfect spot. Luis asked who was getting pierced. It was the moment of truth, now or never. I hesitated, my heart hammering in my chest. A little voice inside of me yelled "Do it, or you'll regret it. Face your fears!" So I raised my hand as my husband held me and kissed me. 

I was the third to get pierced. I really thought I would pee my pants or disgrace myself in some horrid way. But Hydi and Luis talked me through it and calmed me down. I felt my heart slow it's rampant racing and my breathing became deeper, more focused. I was laying face down, gripping Andrews' hands and hoping I wouldn't crush his poor fingers. Actually, at the time, I wasn't worried about hurting his hands. I was just glad he was holding mine.

With Hydi on one side and Luis on the other, I prepared to get pierced. "Deep breath in, let it out slowly". That's all I remember hearing. Then came the pain. Now I understand why it pisses Hydi off when people ask "Doesn't that hurt? Of course it hurts. It hurt pretty bad. I squeezed Andrews hands and I think I cried out or something to that effect (some details of that moment are quite hazy). I remember it feeling like forever though I know it only took a moment. Hydi and Luis are good, real good. They made sure I was ok, everyone was grinning and someone (bless you, whoever you are) got me some water.

Once everyone was pierced we all got our ropes attached. Murray and I walked down the beach a bit and then we slowly walked away from each other. Once Murray stopped it was up to me to pull against him. He wanted me to test my limits and share the experience with me so he let me do the majority of the work (thanks babe!). I pulled against the ropes and felt my skin stretching. It was the oddest sensation. It didn't really hurt. It was more of a deep pressure and it felt good and odd at the same time. I swear I could hear Murray breathing over the crashing waves even though he was at least ten feet away. I felt connected to him on a deeper level than ever before. I had achieved my goals; to share in something he loves and exchange a deep spiritual energy with him. We pulled against each other in that fashion for a while. I don't know how long it was, really. After he unhooked his carbineer from mine we just held each other for awhile. Then I started to cry. Deep sobs just br oke out of me, one after the other. Murray never said anything. He just held me tightly and let me cry myself out. He knew what I was feeling, had gone through it himself and understood the cathartic value of those kind of tears. I wasn't sad. In fact, quite the opposite. Something had broken open inside me. I think it was something that needed to be opened for a long time. 

Meanwhile, everyone else was hooking into a multi-person pull. Once Murray and I were done, we walked over there and were invited to join in and we decided to go for it. I think there were eleven of us total. I got hooked in next to Hydi who had been incredible throughout all of this. Then I pulled.     

And was pulled. I don't know if I can adequately convey the environment in which we found ourselves but I'll try. Picture the night sky, devoid of street lights. Stars and a bright waning moon beam down upon a beach where waves splash against the shore. Somewhere nearby someone is playing a frame drum just for us. Now picture eleven people, tied together in a circle. Some are facing into the center of the circle. Others are facing outwards, away from the center. Some are in the water, others just at the waters edge. Now picture them all pulling in the bright moonlight, exchanging energy, pulling and being pulled. Think of the music, the sound of the waves and the surge of the water flowing with and against the people pulling. That is the best picture I can possibly convey. 

The feeling of it all was incredible. Several times I was pulled to the point of being off-balance, about to fall over. But somehow, even with all of the forces playing around me, I was able to come back to my center of balance for at least a moment or two before something new would pull me in another direction. 

At one point Hydi held my hand and asked if I was ok. I wish I could have articulated how "ok" I was. But I think she understood even without some long speech from me. 

Everyone was still going strong when I was ready to stop. By that point my feet had begun to hurt. It's amusing that the pull I was so nervous about ended, for me, not because of any pain from the pull but because of my screwed up feet. So Murray and I were unhooked and we went up onto drier sand and watched this amazing event continue. I was grateful, at peace and felt filled with some type of amazing energy. Not the shouting at the rooftops kind of energy, but quiet, silent energy. 

Once everyone was done and the hooks were removed (which hurt a lot less that I expected), we all went to our tents for some much needed (at least on our part) sleep. It was about 4 am and I, for one, was tired. About 2 hours later we were woken up to shouts about dolphins. We got up and watched a huge pod of dolphins out in the water, jumping and racing about. We watched in quiet awe as the dolphins swam back and forth under a rainbow that stretched across the ocean, touching down in the water on both sides. It felt like approval from the Divine for what we had done last night upon the shore.

I have one crazy thing to note about this experience. When Murray and I were packing up our gear (and there was a lot of it) we worked so well together, like a true team. We've never been able to do that before. We couldn't even kayak together. Now we were just getting things done with very few words needing to be spoken. It was like we were still so in tune with one another that we could almost anticipate one another's needs. Even writing this about 2 weeks after the fact makes me realize that we are still working together this way on a certain level. I am truly grateful for that.

So that brings us to the final question. "Will I ever do another pull?" I expect I will. However, it would have to be under a similar set of conditions and circumstances. For me, it was a personal and significant spiritual journey shared, first and foremost, with Murray, the companion to my soul, and secondly, with a group of wonderful people whose spirits walk paths similar to mine. I am truly grateful to the wonderful people who made this possible and who shared such an eye-opening and gratifying experience with me. You are all blessed souls. Thank you.

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submitted by: Anonymous
on: 12 April 2003
in Ritual

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Artist: Hydi+and+Luis
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Location: on+Makua+Beach%2C+Island+of+O%27ahu%2C+Hawai%27i

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