I don’t know about you, but if I plan to be with someone 24/7 until the moment of my death, I’d strongly prefer to at least like them. I’m talking about our bodies here – the only relationship guaranteed to be lifelong. Since I can remember, I’ve had a tumultuous relationship with my body, alternately playing the victim and the perpetrator in my own mind.
Victim: My body won’t do what I want her to do. She gains and holds weight way too easily, and she is not shaped the way she needs to me in order for me to be loved and accepted. She doesn’t have enough energy to do what I want. She’s too sensitive and feels too much, and it’s too much for me. She limits me.
Image courtesy of adamr / freedigitalphotos.net
Perpetrator: I’ve hurt her with my thoughts and judgments. I’ve starved and stuffed her and deprived her of sleep. I’ve denied her feelings and tried to numb her. I’ve hated her and she’s trapped with me, unable to escape her tormentor.
With a whole lot of help over the years, I think I am ready to get off this drama train.
I believe I am a soul – indestructible and eternal – here in a human body to do something (maybe small) to help make the world better for all beings. (I believe you are too.) Finally, I’m starting to see that whatever I do in this lifetime, it is because of both of us. We’re a package deal, and whatever unique contribution I make will be because of the partnership of my soul and body.
Today, I’m inviting you to start moving towards a celebration of your partnership with your body. It doesn’t matter where you are right now – whether you hate or love your body – the idea is to just open up a dialogue between the two of you and celebrate that.
I’ve worked with some incredible coaches around this topic, and they’ve both suggested a variation of a letter to my body, so I’d like to share that invitation with you now:
- Write a letter from your body to you. This was suggested to me by the brilliant and fabulous Bridgette Boudreau.
- Write a letter from you to your body around some change you would like to make or explaining an issue. Mine was over a fear that my body would think I was judging her current size if I chose to lose weight. This was suggested to me by the brilliant and fabulous Jen Picicci.
I’m sharing both of those letters with you today, though it feels a wee bit raw to do so:
Image courtesy of Simon Howden / freedigitalphotos.net
First off, please thank Bridgette for me. I’ve received a number of apology/appreciation letters from you over the years, but never did I get a chance to reply and I’ve so wanted to!
Now, let’s get clear here – I chose YOU, girlie. Thank you for the apologies, but they are just not needed. On this mortal ride, if you get to be a spiritual being having a human experience, doesn’t it make sense to you that I CHOSE YOU? I am not your victim, sweetie, I’m your partner.
I knew I was going to be carrying our trauma for many years; I knew I’d be starved and stuffed and hated and ignored. But, I get to be the vehicle for one hell of a gorgeous soul and I wouldn’t trade it for a whole lifetime of nutritious food and pampered grooming. Why do you think I volunteered? You needed a powerhouse of a body to get you through those horrible training years, and I was happy – I AM happy – to carry you until you’re strong enough to walk with me.
Please be patient with yourself. I promise you, I’m going to be here until the very end. Just rest and breathe for a bit. Better yet, let me take care of that for you.
With tremendous love,
I’m writing because I’m afraid you’re going to think I’m judging you now – and I have been for the last twenty years – if I choose to lose weight.
And as I write that, I hear just how silly it is. You’ve been living with my judgment for nearly our whole lives, since I was old enough to comprehend the words to judge. You’ve been here, beautifully supportive, giving me the very best you have – always. And you’ve done that at every age, at every weight, without complaint.
No one has ever loved me as much as you do. You have carried so much for me – lived through years of pain and abuse – and you still don’t flinch away from me. You’re still here, willing to give your all.
You’re the one who knew what types of things my soul needed to learn in this lifetime, and you volunteered to partner me through it. You’re the reason I’m able to feel so much pain, and joy indescribable.
I feel like you have been waiting for me to catch up, patiently by my side, guiding me along until I’m ready to be wide open, ready to pull the scab from the wound and let all this glorious light come through.
All these years you have been waiting for me to see you, and now, finally, I do.
I’d love to hear what you decide to do – leave a comment and let us know if you learned anything interesting with your letter!
I’ve created a new guided audio MP3 to go with this post, called “Celebrating Your Body,” as a ten minute relationship repair for you and your body. If you’re interested, please sign up for my newsletter below for access to the audio and my whole library of free tools. Once you sign up, you’ll receive an email with a link to the library and the password – scroll to the bottom for the newest audio. I hope you enjoy it!