• Current Reading List

    Peaceful Action, Open Heart - Thich Nhat Hanh*** Eat, Pray, Love*** Peaceful Living - Mary Mackenzie(daily reader)*** The Vein of Gold - Julia Cameron (this is a read a chapter a week type book)*** Dubliners - James Joyce*** Nursing: The Philosophy and Science of Caring - Jean Watson*** The Diary of Virginia Woolf. Volume I***
  • Two roads diverged in a yellow wood and I, I took the one less travelled by, and that has made all the difference.

Cut like a buffalo

“you know i look like a woman but I, I cut like a buffalo”

These words, from a song by the Dead Weather,  beloved Jack White’s latest endeavor, speak volumes about how I feel today. Take these words to mean what you like, and in the context of the song they may not mean what they mean to me – but you get my drift. For me, these words symbolize how strong and powerful and beautiful I feel today. I feel alive and grateful. I ran the majority of 4 miles this morning (did 5 miles twice this weekend) and I am ready for my 5 mile race this Turkey day. I have this song on my running playlist. It makes me stretch my stride and feel like I can run for miles and miles. “I am strong, powerful, and beautiful…I can do anything.”

Now I realize that this post is quite along a different track than my last few. But this time of year, I like to meditate on all that I have to be grateful for. This is so much the more poignant for me in the face of recent and ongoing grief. That pain is still there…although it is no longer consuming my days. A lot of this is helped by the fact that my husband is home and he loves me so very well. His love is so supportive and foundational. It was there even while he was gone, but it was . I have beloved friends that love me and family that love me very well. Loved well. That is such a good feeling.

Something else I am very very grateful for this year is my body. Basically that is what this post started out to be about…but the love and gratitude I feel generally for my world are very intrinsically linked to how I feel internally about myself. I am so grateful for the ability to look in the mirror and see good things about myself (even when I am naked!). To be able to move.and not huff and puff when taking a few extra steps. to run up stairs. to even contemplate running FIVE MILES. As you can read from previous posts (if you are so inclined), I have always thought of myself as the “fat girl” that couldn’t engage in sports or active activities. afraid of looking foolish, of being behind, not being able to keep up. Now all of that stuff doesn’t matter. I am not that girl anymore. I am active. I am increasingly fit every day. I am a runner of races. (well, the plural will be accurate after Thursday). And want to hear a secret I don’t like to share with many…. I have released 66lbs. That is a small person. I say release, because everytime I “lose” weight, just like with anything else I lose, I seem to look for it until I find it again. So now I am not losing, I am releasing.

and today I am so very grateful.

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2 Responses

  1. Wow! I stumbled upon your musings while trying to find different ideas about “I look like a woman, but cut like a Buffalo” might mean.

    I can’t begin to tell you how your words made me feel — at home, not alone. Reminds me that as a woman, we all belong to a sacred community with a silent language and nuance all our own. It makes me crazy when I see so many women looking at each other as competition of some sort. How many cold, aloof women have you worked with (many of them think for) who in searching for a female role-model have instead chosen a male one and then tried to feminize the outcome. They end up bitter, confused, lashing out at other women — all the while trying to determine if the black “power” suit can be softened up somehow. Wow! I’m raving now. Sorry about that.

    Anyway, I’d really love to know more about how you’ve made peace with your body. I’m 42 and was diagnosed with
    Fibromyalgia/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome about 12 years ago. I’m 5’4″ and weighed about 120 lbs until 3 years ago, at which point I began to slowly put on weight. Then, this last year, I began gaining 10 lbs a month, and am now at 190 lbs! My doc is sending me to a reproductive endocrinologist and is pretty sure the weight is related to early peri-menopause onset. I’ve had hot-flashes, etc. since I was in my late 20’s, and my mother finished menstruating 4 years after I was born, at age 42. I realize this is a lot of information, but with your background and personal experience, I thought you might have some ideas for me.

    Thanks!
    Dani

    • Thanks for your thoughts Dani. I REALLY relate to a lot of what you shared. I have been learning over the last few years to love and respect my fellow women – to see myself as part of that shared community that you speak of. I certainly wasn’t raised or encultured to feel that way, and I still have to remind myself NOT to be mean to other women and not to expect them to be mean to me! Alot of that has come about from this process of learning to love myself and love my body.
      I really feel honored by your request. I think that the two things I would say have been most important to me 1) learning to be gentle with myself and 2) learning to talk nice to myself (recognizing and then reducing negative chatter and replacing with positive affirmations). I use positive affirmations in many forms – written and verbal. I journal positive affirmations. The author that got me started on that path was Louise Hay and I thoroughly recommend her book “You Can Heal Your Life”, as well as anything else she has written. As for being gentle with myself – for me tis means learning that it is a process. Some days I love my body – and other days I do not…and just learning how to be okay with that. I hope this helps some!
      Jennifer

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