Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The Icing On the Cake

Remember that trip I wrote about in the last blog, to see friends in Denver? I'm back and still have a warm feeling in my heart for one girlfriend who's found a beautiful house in an adorable neighborhood, where she lives with her funny and insightful partner. When in Los Angeles, she struggled to find the right pace for her life, often feeling stressed out and overworked. In Denver, she's like another person: settled into her house, finding the time and space to cook meals at home almost every day, and creatively blossoming into her work and her life.

She explained it to me as feeling so content that the rest of her life--whatever happens from here on out with her career, with her income, with the decision to have or not have kids--is 'icing on the cake.' There's no pressure really. She's already arrived where she wanted to go. Whatever happens from here is just fine.

It occurred to me as I went for a hike today that the same can be true of the home we have in our bodies. I take for granted now the ability to be in my body without judgment, to enjoy its company, to feel content and at ease in my own skin. Years ago if you had asked me if this would be true, I would never have guessed I could get here. But I have. And after all that struggle, feeling peace with my body gives me a similar sense of 'arrival.' Everything else from here--the way I experience and move forward with my life--is 'icing on the cake.'

In fact, when a feeling of contentment and peace can permeate the way we feel in our bodies--as it did today with the buttery sun starting to go down and the green hills lit up and basking in its glow--all IS well. When there's no war going on with our bodies, our senses get to take in everything else that's there. We receive that extra bit of blessing. We're able to be open to life in a different and more present way.

I suppose you could say that icing, per the expression, is the extra stuff. A cake would still be a cake without it. But icing also fills the layers, adds sweetness, makes a cake complete. It's okay to want our lives to have it, and to create a solid enough foundation of peace and goodness that we can let the extra stuff, the sweet and luxurious stuff, show up.

If you're struggling with your body, I encourage you to get the help that ends that war and lets you feel the safety and home you can feel in your own skin. Join a support group. Read a book that helps you reconnect. Join my ongoing teleclass for support--a weekly group to help you find your best relationship with your body. (Go to http://www.bodymindguide.com or http://www.annastookey.com and click on 'Love Your Body Teleclass' to find out more.)

Life is too short to be mired in the struggle. I guess I would say that even though we think of what comes after the struggle as the 'icing on the cake' we also deserve to have that 'icing' be an essential part of our lives. It's amazing how peaceful and complete you can feel once you have an ally in your body instead of one more challenge. Walking that trail today I was just one step closer to feeling the sunlight penetrate my being. I can still feel the way my cells light up in the presence of that beauty and my own movement. I'd like you to feel that too.

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