What is Your Relationship with Your Body?

Is your relationship with your body a dictatorship, democracy, authoritarianism, totalitarianism, pluralism, something in-between or completely different?

I have been struggling with the concept of controling our physical body, the repercussions this concept has had on many Americans, and possibly people around the world.  I am noticing most often the extreme dictatorship where it doesn’t matter if the body’s protest is legitimate or not.  If it does not fit in with the expectations for the day, it gets ignored.  I truly believe that this ignorance of our body’s needs is one of the root causes of pain and diseases we see today.  When we ignore discomfort, which turns into pain, and then manifests as dis-ease, we are killing our physical body much faster than if we had a working relationship with it.

I feel the most important thing for each of us to do is to get to know ourselves.  To know when the body is just being lazy, and when it truly has an unmet need.  I believe we are worth the effort it takes to create a working relationship with our body, and that it is vital for our well being.

I experienced having a poor relationship with my body when I was a child, and suffered the consequences over and over again because I didn’t seem to know any better.  The truth is that I just didn’t listen and respond to my body’s needs efficiently.  For me, it is not hard to hear/notice my body’s needs. The challenge has been to slow down and take the time to make the adjustments  necessary to make life go more smoothly.

The biggest lesson has been to allow myself to be a priority.  I have spent my lifetime putting others needs before mine until I am completely depleted, and then I have to retreat into my shell and practically go comatose for as long as I possibly can (but very rarely as long as really needed after fully depleting my energy), until someone else has a need that I have obligated myself to take care of.  Does this sound familiar?

A result of my realization about my relationship with my body is the downsizing of our animal population. I have spent my lifetime taking in strays, other people’s pets, and animals I just wanted to get to know.   I’m talking hundreds of cats and dogs, mice (fresh raw food for the cats – didn’t go over well with the kids:(), rabbits, finches, budgies, parrots, iguana’s, dragons, ferrets, doves, chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, goldfish, freshwater fish, a potbelly pig, miniature goat, dairy cow, meat steer, a lamb, and more.  You get the idea.  All of these animals were taken care of many, many times, before my own needs were met.  At times, I even took care of our animal’s needs before our children’s needs because I had a warped sense from my  childhood that the kids would be fine, and didn’t need me as much as the animals did.  A result of these experiences with animals is,  I know how to take care of many different types of creatures including myself.

I am taking control of my life by developing a working relationship with my body. You are welcome to join me on this journey.  I will share different insights and techniques that I find helpful and where to find resources at minimal or no expense.  In this day and age we have amazing resources at our fingertips.  Finding what is helpful can be tricky and I will do my best to help with that.

Peace and Love to All,

Dove

Cat Fights and the Golden Rule

I was getting ready to go inside, after being outside doing chores, and a bird sound from the back of the house perked my ears.  I went out the back door with my staff and started listening and trying to place where the bird was.  Then all of a sudden here comes 12 1/2 yo Athena (formerly Duchess) being pursued by 3 1/2 yo Sage.  Athena screams when Sage catches her under the back porch.  I try to deflect Sage with my staff, temporarily successful, but he continue’s his ‘attack’ at the back door steps, catching Athena, who instantly screams while he is on top of her.

At this point I was able to grab Sage by the scruff.  I shook and scolded him, walked a few steps away from the house, and sort of threw him towards a grassy area off the walkway.  He fell with no apparent grace, but after landing on the ground on his hip, he tucked, rolled, and ran out towards the field.  I instantly felt terrible, but Athena needed reassurance before I checked on Sage.  After what seemed like forever, but was closer to less than a minute, Athena tentatively came out from under the porch.  She sustained minor injury to her back and neck, and she was very spooked.

(background story is Athena loves to play tag, but hates, hates, hates being tumbled.  Sage loves both, which, in after thought of seeing his ‘attack’, he was not displaying serious aggression. He was playing tag the way he liked and not the way Athena likes it.)

So  now I’m thinking I have to do some serious make up with Sage. But once again (more stories to come) Sage proves to be an amazing being.  He had already come back and was just a few feet from the back door when I spoke to him to let him know I didn’t hold a grudge.  As we walk toward each other I notice he has something yucky on one shoulder.  I look at the spot where I tossed him and there was a mushed turd!  I tell Sage to wait, that I’ll be right back, and go into the house and get a rag wet with warm water, and then go back out to Sage waiting on the back porch.  I wash off the poo, tell him to be more careful with Athena, and then we go off to do our own things for a bit.

Not too much later, after some chores were done and it was time for a snack, I was sitting at the computer checking in on email and fb, when Sage comes over and climbs into my lap.  This is not a regular occurrence, although it is not uncommon, either.  (It can be a challenge for Sage to sit in my lap comfortably, because he is so big and fluffy, and he gets too warm.)  We had some awesome cuddle moments and I was glad to note that the washing was successful, as no smell of poo remained.

This incident got me thinking about the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.  The flaw I see in this rule is when you have one being who likes to play chase, but not tackle, and another being who likes to play chase AND tackle.  I think what miffed me was that even though Athena was protesting very loudly. her protests seemed to go unnoticed by Sage.  Or did she excite and encourage him?  Since I can’t read their minds, and can only guess by their behavior, I will probably never know for sure.  I do feel that Sage did not like me getting angry with him.  He definitely seemed to want to be in my favor, and he knows that I love to cuddle with him. He has also left Athena alone since he came inside.

Neither cat seems too upset by the incident either, as you can see in this evenings pics…01180318200118031820a