2 June 2013

Body Talk

I’ve been talking to my body.

In the shower I thank my previously perfect breasts for being there all these years. I tell them how much they mean to me, and explain that it’s time to rebuild. I let them know how much I’ve loved their size, and shape, and they way they looked in a sheer white cami.  They’ve been a pleasure to touch, a pleasure to dress, and a pleasure to show off in the sauna. They’ve never interfered in exercise, and until the diagnosis, never caused me anything but joy. I tell them that I am grateful, and sometimes I cry.

Then I thank my stomach. At it’s best, I loved the way it dipped from my hips and the firm gentle rises over my belly button. When I rest my hand on it, I feel warm comfort. Before I go to sleep, I often have one hand holding a novel, and the other on my belly.

My belief is that the body has a wonderfully innate intelligence. For the last while I’ve been gaining weight. Historically I put on the pounds in my thighs and arse, so I look like a pear with a flat stomach. This time I gained everything in my tummy. My body knew, I believe, where the fat had to gather, in order to be able to replace the fat in my beasts. I thank my stomach for it’s brilliance. And I apologize that it will cut. And I reassure my jiggly tummy that this procedure will not touch organs or muscles, and will not be an insult to my body.

Bodies are built to heal. My body knew this long before I did, but I say it aloud anyway, because it makes me feel better.

Yesterday I had a massage. My masseuse is also a reflexologist, so she spent quite a bit of time on my feet. She proclaimed that I am healthy and have a lot of vitality. Then after rubbing the ball of my foot, she paused she said my ‘chest was crunchy’.

‘Why would that be?’ I asked her.

‘Grief,’ she said.

I told her about my upcoming surgery and she nodded as though it all made perfect sense. ‘Your body is processing grief.’

She pressed her thumbs deeply into my foot and nodded her approval. ‘The body never lies,’ she said.

‘Thank you, body,’ said I.