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Learning My Body (The Hard Way)

These days my relationship with everyone else is on hold. It’s my relationship with myself that is in full development. It’s not the same as going to massage school, but spending hours every day touching myself intensely has been a full-time education.

My arm has been healing quicker now that I am actively massaging myself and lightly working it out again. I’m discovering spots that are sore and painful under my skin, almost all on my left side, all stemming from some soreness around my heart. I’ve been putting off going for a CT scan since my doctor screwed up the one I had scheduled through him initially. More than being scared of what the scan might discover is that I’m scared that the doctors will try to convince me to do something about it with their “help”. It’s possible that there’s some simple way to solve my issues, but if it involves pills or potions of theirs, I’m going to have to be quickly deteriorating in order for me to decide to go that route.

Instead, I’ve been finally living how I have known for years that I need to live in order to respect myself properly, and I’ve been improving as a result. It took two things: the stability that I have right now (thanks to a steady income and a decent living situation), and the openness and kindness to love and to take care of myself. Over the past 10 years, I may have had one or the other, but almost never both. And now I finally do have both, and I know better than to squander the opportunity that stability offers: to allow for concerted self-development. That means buying the good groceries and eating the nutritious foods and running outdoors by the river at sunset almost every night, treating my body with the respect it has always deserved.

Over the past few years I’ve come to face my darkness more intensely than any other period of my life. I’ve taken out my anger about my failures on myself, which is how I do things historically (as opposed to making others the targets of my anger). I’ve been letting a whisper of a death wish guide my self abuse in periods.

I’ve been able to turn around my self-esteem, and have since restarted towards my long overdue goal of transforming into my own ultimate fantasy specimen. My big revelation at the beginning of my 30s was that I was out of touch with my body. I had ignored my own physicality for most of my life until age 31. I spent almost none of my conscious time feeling my body’s feelings, and lived mostly in my head. After a difficult period in 2011 I came out realizing that I had spent my life ignoring what I now consider an essential aspect of a wholesome life constitution, the physical aspect. I thought it was OK to live your whole life as an intellect, as an “intelligent” person. My realization was that there is also another key form of intelligence, and that is physical intelligence. Knowing how to move in space intentionally, and the mechanics of being tethered to this mass of flesh and bone, were concepts I only started to return to after a life of primarily intellectual education. I understood that I needed to correct this key imbalance if I wanted balance in other aspects of my life.

I began to learn bodyweight exercises and that gave me an introduction to how my own anatomy worked, but I was still very ignorant on what was happening beneath the skin. It’s only now that I am actually intimately and intensely feeling my own body and discovering my anatomy in as hands on a way as I can imagine possible that I am beginning to understand a bit more about how my body works. My old dreams of helping to heal other people have transformed into what they should always have been about: healing myself. Why heal others before healing yourself?

Because healing yourself is painful. Deep tissue massage is painful, especially after letting parts of my body stiffen due to lack of proper care. It’s easier to pay someone to do it for you, but doing it to yourself requires a lot of resolve. Undoing all the tension and infection is taking serious time and effort, but the process has given me a new fascination with life and the understanding of authentic and accessible healing modalities.

Here are some pics from my runs, I even got a Fitbit: