Leah Farmer

Personal perspectives on faith, literature, and life.

This body…

Fat girls notoriously have a love/hate relationship with their bodies.

Oh…who are we kidding…WOMEN notoriously have a love/hate relationship with their bodies.

Interspersed between moments of extreme passion and basking in the look in the eyes of a man who want our body, can be days of ignoring mirrors or obsessing in front of them. The same body that carries you through a rigorous workout with joy at being active, can be a thing of loathing when stepping out of a shower and catching a side glance in the mirror. love-your-body2

The body with the legs that stand up in the board room and deliver the important presentation…

The body with the back that lifts the patient in the bed to ensure there are no bed sores…

The body with the hips that hold the baby while carrying laundry, stirring oatmeal, and making lunches…

The body with the arms that hold the friend who is experiencing loss…

The body that lays down with the beautiful man and experience intimacy and joy…

Tone-it-up-heather-waxman-love-your-bodyThe body with the upraised arms of praise and worship in the temple of your faith…

…that is the body that can be reviled, turned against, ignored, and pummeled with unfair and unkind thoughts. That is the body that is punished yet gets up and gives again. That is the body that takes the aging, the loving, the tears, and the miles and keeps going as much as it can and as far as it can.

When I started digging into my past and its impact on my body issues, I uncovered that I didn’t really hate my body. That I really don’t feel any such way about myself. Instead I carried what others had said about me, the body issues of the matriarchs and women in my life, the images of seeing pornography from too early an age during abuse episodes, and the body issues that rise up when you are a young woman in western culture. So many little and big things play into the stories we tell ourselves about our bodies. So many of us compare ourselves to models who don’t even look like models. Fat girls assume that skinny girls are happy with their bodies. Skinny girls assume that curvy girls are more peaceful. Tall girls hunch their shoulders and forget to stand up straight. And short girls try hard to look and feel taller.

Meanwhile…your body…your sweet, precious, hard-working, constant, loving body tries so very hard to please you, run you, protect you, and extend itself on your behalf. Your body…the temple…tells you that it’s tired, hungry, ill, horny, and eager to move. Your body Love-your-body-quotedances, drives, struts, stands, lays down, holds, hugs, and sits in meditation.

With therapy, massage, acupuncture and meditation I have come to appreciate my body. I have taken it to the doctor for all the necessary check ups that I normally ignore and put off. I am taking it to the gym and to yoga on a regular basis. I do simple things like apply lotion to every inch of my skin instead of just my arms and legs. I spend time putting on pretty matching underwear, dressing my body, and picking clothes and shoes that I feel good about but that are also comfortable for whatever my activity. I feed it whole foods, kick ass smoothies, and good wine. I sleep when I need to sleep. I speak when I need to and walk away from conflict that is a waste of my time and mental/emotional energy.

I honor my body. I am grateful for each inch of me from the soles of my feet to the tippy top curl on my head. And every day I pay attention to what my body wants, needs, and desires.

12813-Love-Your-BodyThank you body…thank you for waiting for me to notice you and to pay attention. Thank you for your patience and care.

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