What got you into hook suspension?
I first encountered it through the BDSM community. I did my first hook pull at a kink event in February of 2007 and it was an incredible and powerful experience. Then a friend of mine was organizing a spiritual retreat weekend that included some flesh rituals and such later that summer and I did my first suspension there. Once I did my first suspension, there was really no going back.
How long have you been in the industry?
I had helped with some of the piercing stuff at my friend’s event over the years, so was able to gain some experience and knowledge there, but not enough to be confident to suspend others. Becoming part of a suspension team was incredible for me, and has really helped me learn and grow a lot. I attended Dallas Suscon this year and seeing so many incredible suspensions really opened up my mind and made me fall in love with suspension all over again.
Are you part of a team? What is your role?
I’m really lucky to be part of The RISE: Edmonton team with some incredible people. I pierce, do bio, post, and coach. I’m also learning the rigging part of it, but that’s had a steeper learning curve for me than the piercing part. Eventually, I really want to be able to do any and all pieces of facilitating a suspension really well.
What are some of your challenges and struggles with hooks?
I’m really horrible about getting pierced. It’s my least favorite part about the whole suspension experience. I get jealous watching others, and how they take the piercings so well. I watch people relax into in and accept it. Some people are stoic, and some actually enjoy the experience. I have the opposite reaction. I get nervous right before and it makes my stomach all upset. Part of me kind of goes somewhere else when I get pierced. I scream and get a little feral and it tends to bring something a bit primal out in me. It tends to strip away my outer, more civilized layers, which I suppose is not really a bad thing in some ways. I’m just grateful that all my piercers are patient people…
I generally remind myself that the suspension itself is the end goal, and getting pierced is the price I have to pay to get there. The suspension is always worth it, so I keep coming back.
It can also take a me while to get up, which can be a bit frustrating at times. I am a bit envious of the people I see who can just go up immediately. I have to work for it. Pain and I play tug of war a lot. I know I generally win, but it often takes a while to get there. And I usually have a moment when I’m trying to get up where I doubt myself and worry that I won’t be able to do it. It passes, and I’m always in awe of what my body can do that my mind questions.
I guess really, one of my struggles has been comparing myself and my experiences with other people’s. I think it’s important to remind yourself that your journey is your own and everyone’s experience is going to be different. When it comes down to the core of it, you’re challenging yourself and not anyone else.
What do you enjoy about hook suspending?
Suspension for me is about so many things. There is nothing else like it. After my first suspension, I was in this peaceful and calm kind of mind set for weeks. It helps focus and center me. When I’m on the ground, my mind won’t shut off, but when I’m in the air, my mind quiets and I get to truly be in the moment.
I’ve always been interested in flight, and have tried a few different ways over the years to achieve my own version of it. This is the closest I’ve ever come to it, and I sort of feel like I’m wearing wings when I suspend.
Suspension is usually a joyful experience for me. I love suspending from my back and having my arms and legs free so I can play in the air.
I get to challenge myself and push myself, and prove to myself that there’s really not much that I can’t do. It feels like there doesn’t seem to be lot of rites of passage for women that doesn’t include their bodies, sexuality, or ability to procreate in some way (especially in Western cultures), so suspension really called to me for this reason as well. I get to test myself, my strength, and my resolve.
Suspension is often a spiritual experience for me as well, especially when I suspend outdoors. I feel closer to nature, feel how things connect, and am able to commune with things outside myself. It’s a weird mix of being able to connect with my internal self and connecting with things outside myself at the same time.
I love helping others suspend. Everyone suspends for different reasons, and I think they’re all valid. I love the fact that we get to help people with such an important moment in their lives.
There’s this moment when someone goes up for the first time… they push through all the hard stuff and their eyes change, then their faces change. They realize what they’ve accomplished, and they are overcome with joy or other emotions. It’s an incredible feeling and such an honor to be able to have had some part in that.
Tell me about some of your suspensions.
Most of my suspensions have actually been suicides. I love having my arms and legs free so I can play around. It’s only been recently that I have been trying different types. I recently did a knee suspension that I pulled myself up for. It was a really emotional one for me. I’m really glad I got up, but sadly I had to come down pretty much right away because I started tearing. My last suspension was a two-point chest outdoors. It was incredible and so joyful! I had a lot of fun pulling and dancing on the ground before I went up, and then getting up was such an amazing feeling. A chest suspension had been in my mind for a long time before I felt ready to try it. It has a lot of personal meaning for me and I’m so glad I was able to accomplish it.
What are some of your future goals?
I’ve been lucky enough to achieve quite a few of them so far. I do want to suspend in a lotus position at some point and I really want to suspend from my chest again. I’d like to do some kind of suspension where I could bounce around a bit on bungee-type cords. I would really like to pull another person up into their suspension from hooks in my chest. I want to do an epic Nerf bat battle while up on hooks, and mosh around with someone a bit. I would love to suspend near the ocean, or over water.
For my future helping other people suspend, I just want to keep growing and learning. Once I feel enough confidence in my skills to experiment a bit, I can see myself exploring the artistic side of suspension a lot more as well.