Invites us to write a letter to our bodies
My letter isn't the typical letter, focusing on typical body image issues, but it I've felt the pull to write it since I saw this call for letters. So, here's my letter:
Let me first say that this isn't an easy letter to write. There has been a lot of tension in and between us, and it's not always easy for me to get in touch with you. Further, there are things I may say that you won't like, and things you may want me to know that I don't like. But I hope that this letter can be the start of a dialogue between the two of us
You know, sometimes, I honestly don't like you. You cause me a lot of pain. And because of the sensations I feel in you, and the things I can't do because of you, I sometimes wish I could be somewhere else, in anything else than you. But let's face it, you and I are stuck with each other. So I want to try to understand you better.
You know, I don't think being you is easy. It's got to be hard when parts of you aren't communicating well. And you're dealing with the stressors you're exposed to every day as well as you can. That pain sure does a number on you, you can't even trust the messages you get from my leg. So the rest of you tries to compensate. So the rest of you gets tired and achy. The heart beats faster, the sympathetic nervous system sounds the alarm, the pain goes up, the nausea goes up and you're left wondering just what the hell is going on there. I can't blame you for getting tense.
And the left leg, that's got to be a frustrating job. Here you were, getting me places, allowing me to dance and doing the best job you could to give me good information. Now, even though the injuries, surgeries and other traumas have healed, you're still stuck with pain. And you have to deal with lack of blood flow, swelling and pain even when you should get gentle touch. I imagine, too, that you're wondering why I've been so distant lately. Why do I all of the sudden sometimes suggest "chain saw therapy", and mean it jokingly or half jokingly. It must be scary to know that you are such a source of pain. You're probably sick of my animosity toward you.
I am truly sorry for my desire to not feel what's going on in my body. I'm sorry that I have been so angry, hurt even, by your best attempts to keep me balanced, moving, and healthy. I can't promise I'll stop feeling angry or hurt, but I can promise to try to do a few things to make your job easier.
First, I'll be more aware of what's going on inside of you. I promise to listen to you. I promise to listen to feedback from my physical therapist and try to surround you in things which will support you, cussion you, comfort and nurish you. I'll do my best to keep my promise in my new years resolutions, and we'll make progress that way. I'll keep checking in with you, and we'll keep going.
Most of all, I promise to remember that I love you, and that you are important to me. I will try to stop blaming you for everything, but rather look at the problem is why is my body responding that way? Is there something I should do? And then try my hypothesis out on you.
In return, please do your best to help me get to class and survive the next days. Then, we can work on bigger goals, like healing, resting and relaxing.
Sincerely and with love,