Home Steps I Am Listening

I Am Listening

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After being abstinent a few years and keeping off 75 pounds (34 kg), I needed to include another amends in my Eighth Step: making amends to you, my body.

I need to make amends for those thirty-five-plus years of stuffing and starving you, shaming and scolding you, shutting you up, shutting you down, disregarding your cries, trying to cut myself off from dealing with you, and believing the physical didn’t matter.

I was taught that avoiding you was spiritual (sins of the flesh). Your size and shape humiliated me in public. I have taken better care of my car than of you.

I didn’t want a body. Nothing was right about it. Yet you never left me. You took the blows. You tried to talk to me, warn me and yell at me before you started to break down, but I didn’t listen.

My relationship with you mirrored my relationship with my mother, men, society, and church: shaming and scolding, denying and disregarding, somehow unacceptable. Funny, for someone so afraid of abandonment, I never considered you had stayed, all the while trying to talk to me, point the way, and connect with me.

I am forever sorry and grateful for your loyalty. You are the vehicle my soul will drive for a while. You like to be cuddled and carried, stretched and comforted. You like warm sand, lavender lotions, gentle winds, and soft cat fur.

What else do you like? I am sorry for not listening to you all these years. I am listening now. You are worth listening to. Every body needs a good listening to.

— Courtney B., Palo Alto, California USA

 

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