I hope everyone is enjoying a great weekend!
For over a week now, I’ve been totally immersed in Susannah Conway‘s gorgeous book, This I Know: Notes on Unraveling the Heart. In it, she unravels the layers of her life, while experiencing a deep, terrible grief and reconnecting to her creativity, which becomes her salve. She also writes about learning to appreciate and love her body.
(This is more than a memoir, though; it’s filled with significant lessons for readers and valuable exercises. I absolutely love the book.)
Her passages are powerful and thought-provoking. My favorite part is that Conway’s words aren’t just illuminating; they’re empowering. They remind us of the importance of honoring our bodies and honoring ourselves. They remind us that our words and our voices do matter. That we can do something every day to foster a positive relationship with ourselves and our amazing bodies. Something kind and compassionate (big or small).
Whether you’re having a particularly tough time taking care of your body or appreciating it or just need a beautiful reminder, here are two passages to read, re-read and print out, too!
Just as I nurture my creativity and feed my mind with words and art, I want to learn how to nurture my body, to treasure the curves and the sags, and thank my feet every day for walking me to the supermarket without too much complaint. To remember to appreciate my arms that carry my groceries home, the finger that presses the shutter button, the knees that bend, the bottom that allows me to sit comfortably as I write these words. And my shoulders! How lucky I am to have them either side of my head, bearing the weight of the world as soundlessly as they do. I want to learn to love my body again because it’s the only one I’ve got.
In another section, Conway writes:
After years of being lost, I am working hard to be the fullest expression of me with friends and strangers, in my journal or in the grocery store: fleshy, messy, human me. There is room for all of us out there; we do not have to make ourselves small to fit into this world. We are together for such a short time, this body and I — when I remember this I let out a breath and sink into accepting that this isall there is. A body, a breath, a hunger for food, for love, for communion with others. This body is not all of me, but it reflects me so well. I let the world see my confidence when I straighten my back and walk tall…My body is a map of my life, guidebook to my desires, and every day I add to the story.
What’s one small thing you can do today to honor your body or help someone else to honor their’s?
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Last reviewed: 1 Jun 2012