Often, we have to make a (very) conscious choice to remember the body. Not only do many of us have to remind ourselves that we live in a miraculous vessel, capable of so much, but we have to remind ourselves that we even live in a vessel and that it’s here and we are in it. For some of us, it isn’t until we feel pain or discomfort or until a teacher or doctor reminds us to think of our body or check in with it that we finally remember the body, (the home) and all the parts that make up the whole.
Of course, that’s ok.
Here we are, and we and can remember the body now and forever more.
And when we forget, we can remember
We can do this until remembering the body throughout the day is woven into our choices, reflections, and moments of gratitude. Perhaps, it can be thought of a meditation of sorts, or something else, of course.
We can remember the body until it’s effortless to consider it, to listen to it, to support it, care for it and maybe even use it!
We can remind ourselves and remember until we familiarize ourselves with this Home a million times over.
After all, the body is a home. We reside here and have for quite a while. However many years you are young, that’s how long. Although, I guess longer because this matter is recycled.
In this body, this home, we get cozy. We have scars here. In this body, we have memories of pain, play, joy, and fear. Also, of course, we cuddle up here and rest; sometimes, we might overwork, then burn out. In this body, we make love. We heal and grow and fart and poop and eat meals here, and yes, we live here all day and night for the entirety of this lifetime. So, how could it be anything but a home? And, if it’s not yet called a home, maybe we can begin here:
- Open the windows and allow in some fresh air.
- Visit the corners and remember all the life that has occurred here.
- Bring in the love and curiosity here.
Remembering the Body: Remembering Home is about getting in touch with all of the body, maybe as a child would: fearlessly, bravely, full of enthusiasm and curiosity and play.
Remembering the Body: Remembering Home is about making space and slowing down to listen and pay attention to the physical.
What is it telling us, and how does it communicate? What has it experienced, enjoyed, and disliked, and what have we heard, seen, or associated with it?
And, of course, How does it feel?
Yes, the thing we have learned to silence, shut down, ignore, and avoid: feelings, feels, emotions, tingles, pains, sharpness, dullness, aches, ease, flow, pumping, burning, expanding, contracting, flutters, flitting, beating, shaking, and even unconditional love.
Are these not just different ways of communicating? Are we listening?
Why does the body scare us? Does it scare us because we learned to distance ourselves from it, so now it is foreign, and are we afraid of what is unknown?
Or is it that we are we ashamed, or are we worried, or petrified of the worst-case scenario? Perhaps we are confused.
This series, Remembering the Body: Remembering Home is a reflection, contemplation, and observation of the body and its parts (that make up the whole). It’s about getting curious, getting acquainted, maybe even loving on the body we call Home or one day will.
Remembering the Body: Remembering Home is a designated time to play with the body through learning, poetry, movement, stillness, good old-fashioned listening, and sometimes a good old-fashioned rolling around on the ground, in bed, or in fits of laughter.
We get to ask ourselves, what can we discover in the corners and crevices? In the attic? In the dark and scary basement? Maybe turn on the light and it ain’t so bad? Maybe face it head-on, and the fear was just an illusion? Perhaps open the doors and let the memories and stories pour out, or open the windows and make space for the new. We may discover those language barriers are not so hard after all.
And why exactly does this matter?
For one, we live here, not just on earth, but in our bodies. Along the way, there have been a million different voices that have told us to disconnect from our bodies. Some of these voices have told us to hand the work over to someone else so that we don’t have to do it, face ourselves or get to know ourselves, or, heck, love ourselves to the depths of our cells, nourish and maybe even heal ourselves.
We’ve learned to let someone else do the translating for us, and somewhere along the way, we have forgotten the language of communicating with ourselves, our bodies, and our Home.
But who could ever know our bodies like we know our bodies?
We live, sleep, eat, rest, overthink, cry, whimper, laugh, run, and crawl in this body. We are here 24/7. The details we observe in this time, in the quiet moments, in the tough ones, in the shower, in moments of learning, couldn’t be known by anyone else—even a master of health, bodies, or movement. There’s something so special about the time you spend with your body. It’s an intimate relationship that exists nowhere else. It’s between you and it. You and you. Why not dive in or take curious baby steps?
Why not know your body so well that you have inside jokes with it, memories you can recall, little languages that you can decipher and listen to and show up for?
Is this Home also a friend? A companion? One that shows up for you, too, even while you sleep?
Now how can we reciprocate? How can we be good friends in return? How can we create the Home of our dreams?
In this space, I will do what I often do: contemplate the body, familiarize myself, wonder and recall. Feel it out. Talk it out and discover. That’s it, and that’s all: noticing, observing, feeling around, and wondering. I think that’s pretty much enough.
Let’s see what we discover along the way.
Where shall we begin? The head? The toes? Somewhere in between?