Dear Body

Dear Body,

Can we be friends?

I know I’m talking to myself and it sounds kind of silly but if I talk to you like a friend maybe you’ll listen.

I need to make amends.

I’ve thought things about you that if I knew anyone else was thinking I’d be crushed.

I’ve said things to you in the mirror that I’d punch someone in the mouth if I heard them say.

I have resisted feeling comfortable in you and have wanted to ignore that you exist. Some of that is because we’ve been violated and our boundaries have been disregarded and disrespected. That’s probably why I cry when we do yoga and why I don’t always know how to read the signals you send me when you need more than I’m giving you.

But a lot of how I have felt about you is because I’ve been the one who has disregarded and disrespected our boundaries.

I have under/over-fed you, under-valued you and under-appreciated you when all you’ve ever done is support every step and breath I take.

When Husband took the picture above, he captured a moment of pure bliss. Giant waves crashed around me and I felt the power and awe of God. But when I saw the picture, all I could see is my pear-shaped body, thick thighs and jiggly parts disguised by a tankini.

You deserve better than that. You don’t deserve to be reduced to how fat or thin you are, how much cellulite you have or how the world perceives your beauty or lack of it. You don’t deserve to be reduced at all.  

You kept me upright when I learned to ride a motorcycle and when I raced my quad up Competition Hill.

You’ve kept a steady pace up countless desert and mountain trails, teaching me the importance of breath and focus.

My babies came into this world through the miracle that is you and still find sanctuary in your embrace.

And there is no better feeling than wrapping you in a cozy blanket on the couch on a cloudy day.

When my mind is vulnerable and I start to falter in my confidence, I want you to remember these things:

Don’t question how the man that has been married to you for over 22 years can still be ridiculously attracted to you. Just embrace it and know that you are worthy of love and affection.

When you try on clothes and they seem to accentuate everything you want to hide, you are not the problem. The clothes are the problem. Find better clothes. I don’t want you to feel squeezed. I want you to feel hugged.

I don’t want you to feel like you’re on display in a contest of impossible standards. We have too much living to do to play games that aren’t even fun.

You are not a temporary shell that has to be endured or modified to make me feel better about how I feel inside. We are STRONG. We are BRAVE. We are ONE.

 

42 Comments on “Dear Body

  1. Pingback: Dear Body — Mended Musings – chronicpainsurvivor

  2. This is such a clever post in the way it gives recognition to things we think about our bodies by putting them into words and treating the body like a person with whom we are conversing. It really adds perspective to the conversation Karen. Thanks for sharing this. I think most all of us can relate and can see ourselves and our own attitudes reflected in these words. I know it struck a chord with me.

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  3. I knew this would be an especially good post when I saw it in my inbox.
    I want to take your words, your lessons, your insights and pass them along to my sister, my daughter, my mother, my friends…myself. What is it about the female make-up that makes us loathe the amazing, miraculous gift of our bodies?
    I LOVE that photo of you and I love you, too – thank you for sharing this…it was a message I needed to hear today. Xo

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  4. Such an important message here Karen. We spend so much energy & time seeing the parts of our bodies we feel so critical of rather than celebrating all of the things we are able to experience as a result of living a life that is full & rich. The photo your husband captured is truly worth a thousand words….Life in all its glory! Grab hold & enjoy the ride.

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  5. Karen, You know I’m ALL ABOUT this amazing post, sister. I LOVE this piece so much. I delight in seeing other women get to this place of self-acceptance with their bodies (regardless of size, shape, or health). I love the heart, the soul, the energy behind this delicious realization of yours. Your words are a balm for the burn, babe. The best part? I can feel your body just lapping it up. She’s wanted this for so long. She’s wanted to be acknowledged, supported, cherished, and really seen by you for so long. All of our bodies do. You have learned the secret to happiness here, honey. Without self-love and acceptance, we cannot truly love and accept others. The answers lie within us. All of them. Our lovely bodies are the way through the thickets. As for your photo, you look AMAZING. I adore this happy photo of you so much. It’s freeing. It’s loving. It’s a huge gift to the entire earth plane. I feel the release of judgement when I look at your photo. I feel the rush of letting go of unreal, unproductive, damaging ideas about how one ought to look. I feel the freedom. I feel the love. YOU have created this for all of us. Thank you, sister. Muwah! -BigLizzy

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    • I’m so feeling what you’re saying. I’m going to come back to this comment over and over again whenever I feel like I’m losing my confidence and momentum! This acceptance I feel is life changing in a way that I didn’t think was still possible for me. Outwardly, everything is the same but inwardly I feel younger and more vibrant. Thank you for your beautiful words BigLizzy! You rock!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. A truly inspiring read! I too have beaten myself up about how my body looks. Letting go and enjoying the experience is becoming more important to me as I get older. While the photo will be a reminder of the experience you had, the memory will remind you of how you truly felt.

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    • Thank you! I totally agree about it becoming more important as I get older. I think that’s what prompted me to look at how I talk to myself and make a change. Life is too short and I want to be the healthiest me I can be! ❤

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  7. I love the picture! I want to be that confident. I haven’t worn a swimsuit in public in decades. I’m saving this and re-reading with the goal in mind of writing something as kind and compassionate about my body. Good for you!

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  8. God, Karen, this made me sob. Every single line resonates with me. And having spent the last week school shopping with my fourteen year old daughter who has a far kinder and softer relationship with her body than I with mine — this is another inspiration to let go. I want to be free of this unkind lens and mindset I imprison myself with. The work to live in the moment and let the joy in continues. To live in the here and now and let the love in. Thank you for this brave reminder. And I love love love that photo. You are and always have been beautiful to me. ❤️

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    • This made me tear up. My daughter is only 7 but I’m so conscious on the way I talk about myself around her because I never want her to try to emulate my negativity. Everything is catching. I ask her for fashion advice because she’s all about color, texture and feel and never about “looking fat”. She’s all sequins and spice, polka dots and stripes. I’m still shy about the photo but I’ll never forget how those waves felt crashing on me and I can’t wait to do it again! Thank you and a big smooch! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

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