I like to think of myself as a positive person. I try, as much as possible, to see the good in situations and people. Along with this, I like to appreciate the good things in my life. Except my body. I don't often think about the good things about my body.
Today was a fantastic day. Beautiful weather (finally) and a great meeting filled me with peace and joy.
I walked to work today. The walk is about a 20 minute one through downtown. I don't walk to work often enough and as I was walking home this afternoon I was thinking about how I should walk more. I started thinking about how I should exercise more and, since I was drinking a wonderful fancy coffee beverage that I shouldn't have been drinking, I was also thinking about how I should eat better then I do. Overall, I was getting down on myself. Then, in a moment of grace, I thought about how I'm not positive about my body. This thought was like God speaking to my heart. It was so quiet and quick that I almost missed it. But, by the grace of God, I didn't. Instead I started pondering it in my heart.
The idea that I am so negative about my body and it's abilities is shocking to me. I spend so much time thinking and praying about the Theology of the Body. And while this has certainly inspired me to take better care of my body and has affected how I think about my body as a concept, I am shocked to discover that it hasn't yet affected how I feel about my body or what I think about my body in particular. Primarily and extensively, my thoughts and feelings about my body are negative ones. "I can't do this." "I can't eat that." But this stopped today.
As I continued walking I decided to think about what my body CAN do and the amount of things I can up with was amazing. I have so much to be grateful for. What a gift my body is!
I can walk. How amazing it is to move independently. Yes, I have to move slower then some others and yes, my body aches more than I would like. But I can walk. I can move. I can connect physically with the larger world around me. How quickly this thought becomes one of accusation and judgement. "I should walk more." "Why don't I exercise more?" "Why am I so lazy." But today I quiet those voices (actually, to say it impolitely but accurately, I am telling those voices to SHUT UP) because, today, I am being positive about my body's abilities. I am grateful I can walk!
I can quilt and sew. What a great talent I have inherited from my mother's family. I spent most of the weekend sewing items and having a blast. I can create beautiful and useful items. I can take fabric and thread and put it together to form something new. How amazing is that! How awesome to partner with God in this way!
I can sing. Recently, the voice in my head has been saying, "Oh, you used to sing so well. You are out of practice. Shame!" Again, today, I reject this voice. I love to sing. And I am grateful that I can make music with my body. I love that I can praise the Lord with my voice.
On that note, I am grateful I can speak. I can speak about God's goodness. I can communicate with those around me. I can commune with those around me. I can form unions with those around me because of my body. This is what I am most grateful for; the ability to connect with those I love. I can touch my husband. I can shake hands and exchange greetings to a new friend. I can smile at the cashier when I buy coffee.
My body allows me to connect with this beautiful world and specifically the beautiful people around me. So, today, I am being positive about my beautiful body!