Friday, July 1, 2011

The body whisperer

In her amazing book, The Four Day Win, Martha Beck devotes a chapter to the corollary between gentling horses and coming into right relationship with our bodies. She talks of watching a friend domesticate a horse by speaking its language, by setting aside the predator/prey relationship that is a function of biology between the two species, and coming into a gentle, loving place where the horse will team up with the human.

She suggests that most of us with food issues and body issues are playing out the predator/prey relationship every day, trying to whip our bodies into shape through shame and deprivation and well-meaning external and internal cruelties.

Last Sunday at my Women and Food group, we read this chapter aloud to each other. The responses of the others were just as profound as my own had been. Was there really, truly a way to be in a different relationship with our bodies and the tender part of our selves that are interwoven into those cells?

And I thought about my Wounded Child Who Eats as the wild horse trying to survive and my predator-self the Abstainer trying hard to be in control to survive and I felt such sorrow for them both.

Beck gives a simple 10-minute soothing exercise at the end of the chapter. It is a combination of self-soothing and meditation. I'm doing it each day. I'll report what happens.

1 comment:

sorella said...

Dear Jill,

It sounds like this woman has hit on something that will lead many people to a better understanding of their relationship with their bodies. I hope that you find her exercises helpful! Please do keep us posted on what happens.

hugs