A Joyful Journey...

Join Doris Smeltzer, critically acclaimed author/educator, as she muses on topics from eating disorders to the mysteries of life. Often "Featured" are select, astute observations made by Andrea during her all too brief 19-year life…it is she who taught us: the joy IS in the journey!

An awakening shower

During an upcoming training that I'll be co-facilitating I need to be prepared with a "statement" about my body's beauty to share with the attendees (they will be asked to do the same).

As many of you know, since Andrea's death I have worked hard at seeing and appreciating my innate beauty, especially my body's beauty. After thirteen years, I can tell you that this is an on-going process (at least for me). In the beginning, I could not muster "love" for my body. I had spent so many years believing the cultural messages and pursuing the "ideal" of thinness that the thought of loving something I had abused and hated for so long seemed impossible.

Cultivating love was just too big a leap ... so instead, I worked on respect. I took time to notice all that my body could do for me (it breathes regularly, my heart beats, my eyes blink, my mouth chews, my sweat glands function, and on and on--all without conscious thought or effort from me). I could respect the miraculous functioning of my body without truly loving it.

After six years or so of continual respect it felt that I had, without really noticing, slipped into loving my body. Recent weeks have made me question the truth of this statement, however. I've been criticizing it again (internally--no outward comments) and have been curious to discover what this is about. The answer came a few days ago while taking a shower.

Soap got in my eyes and no amount of rinsing seemed to allow me to comfortably keep my eyes open, so I had to finish bathing with my eyes closed. Somehow this fact pulled me into proceeding with complete awareness (probably due to my heightened consciousness for the potential of falling). As I washed my face, the thought, "Wow, you can't feel wrinkles" popped into my head. As I scrubbed my torso, legs and arms, I felt only their smooth strength...no lumps or bumps or rolls were evident. Suddenly I knew what had been going on: my return to personal insults was about the swiftly multiplying visual signs of aging! I was shocked and then ... relieved. 

Nothing major going on...just my need to accept that my body is moving through its life-process of getting older. I can continue to take care of it by nourishing it well, moving it daily and ... yes ... loving it, "for as long as we both shall live."

[Originally posted on the Gürze Books Eating Disorders Blogs]

A special weekend...
From Africa, with love

Related Posts

 

Invest in ending eating disorders:

Shop via AmazonSmile or:

Givva
Use Giving Assistant to save money and support Andreas Voice Foundation

Automatically support Andreas Voice Foundation by shopping at Office Depot, Old Navy, and Target.

The book, "Andrea's Voice...

Silenced by Bulimia

 

Silenced by Bulimia (Gürze, 2006). read more...

Gratitude for support from:

mechnaics bank logo

Tag Cloud

eating disorders, body image personal change healing, weight loss self-compassion, Italy Austria bulimia self-love Mothers Day self-hatred Alzheimers privacy, queer body love Spring self-acceptance Labor Day dysfunctional family, NEDAW love recovery fat talk metaphors, lessons learned challenges extended family, Renfrew Perspectives Health At Every Size® mental illness body killer stress, white privilege First Lady Weight Stigma Awareness Week anorexia fat people, Sequoia National Forest competent eating Taryn Brumfitt beauty dancing at bus stop #Nuerofeedback4EDs Lets Move! Chimamanda Adichie self-care, Silver Creek Falls Intuitive Eating Bailey Webber Florence Kenya binge weight spain Nigerian Health At Every Size®, mindfulness, preferred gender pronouns Body of Truth Julie Wyman Michelangelo Africa weight stigma self-forgiveness high school reunion fat friendly doctors, body positive self-loathing Lindsey Averill Italians wedding judgments bittersweet only you can be you American Medical Assn., nature / nurture, wi-fi bride & groom baby steps Internet meme memories shattered health and fitness, independence Mrs. Obama ritual cellulite magical thinking breaking down walls Rumi, vulnerability, crash diets, Independence Day body hatred Passover New Year models health Resolutions Cutting, public ownership, grief intersectionality Easter 4-wheel drive workplace wellness body acceptance, social media Eating Disorders Awareness Month International No Diet Day Andreas Voice, non-binary gender fat acceptance, shame, black & white thinking healing metaphors,

Andrea's Voice...

Silenced by Bulimia

 

Silenced by Bulimia (Gürze, 2006). read more...

Invest in ending eating disorders:

Shop via AmazonSmile or: