By ena ganguly
First things first, what is your ideal relationship with your body? That will decide what expectations you have of yourself and then you can figure out how to meet them. My ideal relationship with my body is to be comfortable with my body, to be okay, to say, this is my body and I am happy, content, and proud to be here, in this vessel. I don’t want to accomplish self-love. Instead, I want to reach for self-care, for self-it’s-okay, for self-safety, and self-comfort.
Knowing that about myself, here are some steps I want to take to reach those expectations.
One: Celebrating My Body
I want to celebrate my body in ways that make me feel safe, relaxed, and comforted. Some ways I want to do that is by going to the pool, doing yoga, stretching, and experiencing sensual pleasure.
Ever since I got my swim suit from a plus-size store, I’ve felt very comfortable being in the water and letting my body play. I don’t go to the pool to put in serious laps, but I enjoy floating and, after buying water goggles, swimming underwater for a few minutes at a time. The days I go to the pool, I sleep really well, with my body warm from the sun and movement I got that day.
Same thing goes for yoga and stretching, but during this exercise, I feel I can reach deeper into my body. I feel how the breath moves, as I stretch my muscles and release the day, week, or month away. Yoga enables me to just be, and I don’t have to think, worry, or puzzle over anything. In that moment, my body is the center of attention.
Sensual pleasure means pleasure for the senses, not necessarily sexual in nature, although masturbation and sex is a valid way to celebrate our bodies. I want to enjoy treating my body to essential oils, incense, and the smell of cooking food and eating that food.
Two: Wearing My Body
Since I gained weight in the last two years, many of the clothes I had in college don’t fit me anymore. I see this as an opportunity to toss out the old and invite in the new! I’m trying to create a budget, a list of clothes I want, where I want to shop and save up money.
I’m of the mind that it’s good to go thrifting at your local thrift stores as well as get a brand new outfit. The Treasure City Thrift fundraiser for allgo is also happening next Wednesday, which will be an opportunity for me to donate some of my clothes as well as get some cute clothes from other queer people of color!
Three: Practicing Gratitude For My Body
Last but not least, I want to take the time to practice saying thank you to my body for all that it does for me. I remember sitting through all the science classes I took in high school being so amazed at all the various functions the body is responsible for, down to a cellular level. Every day our body wants us to win, to survive, and to thrive. I want to at least bring attention to all the work my body does for me and others and sit in gratitude and thankfulness.
What are your goals for your relationship with your body and how do you want to get there? Share with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!