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Falling in Love: When the Body Says “Yes!”

September 19, 2011

This summer I fell helplessly and deeply in love. It was not my first time feeling this bigger-than-life, adrenaline pumping, oxytocin-flooded body and mind. But it was an intense romance, demanding most of my attention throughout my days and capturing my dreams at night. Make no mistake, this love was no fleeting fancy. I was facing the love of my life.

So who was the object of my affection? Alas, it was not the most incredibly handsome, full-hearted, spiritually conscious and sexy man living next door to me. No, my unbounded love was for my body and how miraculous it really is.

You see I survived a very emotionally, physically and spiritually challenging few months. And this amazing body of mine kept showing up, in its somatic fullness, with my heart raw and mind spinning, no matter what circumstances were happening outside or inside of it’s hallowed structure.

The love affair began on the dance floor. Entering into my dance, I hauled my feet and heart and hips and head into the sacred space. Mostly feeling broken and unworthy, or bitter and ready to fight the world, I let my body guide me. In a few short minutes, my body parts would conspire together to bring me back to equanimity. What ever emotional and physical state I began in my dance, it was always transformed into something else, something greater. Even in my most desperate and dire state of being, I followed my body and allowed it to open to itself through the rhythms, releasing all that was pent-up so tightly inside. These healing waves were huge for me. I was left in awe of the transformative power of the 5 Rhythms ™ and how my body was perfectly suited to it! Even after more than 14 years of dancing the rhythms, my body and soul adores this practice.

And it did not end there. I also put my body on the yoga mat when my “obsessive-can’t-stop-this-train-of-thought-for-anything” brain was driving me nutty. Again, after a few short minutes of breathing and contorting my body parts into twists and angles usually found in geometry texts, I would arrive on the other side of the equation. I was more open physically, less frantic intellectually and feeling like I could tackle another day. My body kept saying, “yes, we like this, it feels good”.

So I tried another approach with my body. Swimming in the early hours of the morning. Repetitive, monotonous laps. Back and forth, breathing, breast stoke, front crawl, back stoke. Counting laps, one, two, three, ten, 27, 34, 55, 80. Even as my thoughts tried to work out how to fix my relationships, get rich quick or re-decorate my house, my body kept moving through the cool water. I found a rhythm that soothed and calmed my tense being. After 30 minutes I would emerge a new woman, heart pounding steady and strong and feeling a clearer space all through my torso. It felt like I washed away the stress and entered into a fresh state of being.

All through the summer, I brought my body to somatic practices that offered the possibility for metamorphosis or renewal. Ecstatic dance. Developmental movement patterns. Kirtan. Walking. The Bartenieff Fundamentals™. Meditation. Chi Gung. Halprin Life Art Process. Each time, the result was the same. When I entered into a somatic experience, bringing my body and mind together, miraculous things happened. Things I could not predict. I felt a deep respect for these cells and organs and bones and blood that make up me, in this body, in this moment. I came to understand that the body, mind and spirit work together always for your greater good. And when I listened closely to the body, I would hear the truth, even if that truth was hard to hear. I could become curious about what my body needed, follow the passion of my heart and be open to new outcomes. I felt the Divine within me and surrounding me in support. And most importantly, I fell head-over-heals in love with this body, the only one I have. I made a decision to love it and care for it gently and graciously, one day at a time, for as long as I am able.

“Our bodies are a temple of our life experiences and learnings. With compassionate support, we can open these temples so that our inner spirit shines forth both fiercely and lovingly into our lives, our families, and our world. ” Annie Brook

Wishing you continued discoveries of your own body and a love affair for life,


2 Comments leave one →
  1. September 19, 2011 12:04

    I love how you share your journey of discovery and healing Marcia. I can relate to what you describe on a personal and professional level. When we stop separating ourselves from our bodies and listen within, our body is one of our greatest resources in healing. I have recently done a lot of nutritional cleansing using green smoothies and other supplements. I found myself humbled and astounded at the emotional content that surfaced and could then be released in movement. Our issues really connect to our tissues.

  2. December 23, 2011 00:34

    The body offers the most direct route to the emotional, psychological, and spiritual; “dancing” oneself, rather than “thinking” oneself, into a healthier state, is beautifully described in your piece here, Marcia. In our life style, if we don’t schedule in time for the body, it won’t happen.

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