Inspired by this article I recently read at MindBodyGreen, I started to think about all the things our body can say about us. While that article primarily focuses on health issues that can be indicated by various physical signs, I started to think about the things our bodies say about us, and more importantly, about how they show what makes us who we are, the good and the bad.
The first mark that comes to mind are the slight wrinkles many people have on their forehead or crow’s feet next to their eyes. When I was younger — at some point during high school — I can distinctly remember someone saying that some particular facial expression would cause wrinkles.
I can’t remember if it was me making the face or a friend, but I remember sitting back and thinking, “They would be wrinkles caused by smiling… who would be ashamed of that?!” and vowing to never give a second thought to pulling a funny face to make someone laugh or laughing myself.
I hadn’t thought of this moment in many years until just recently, as I stood in my bathroom, looking closely into the mirror, and wondering where the years had gone, suddenly noticing a few new lines on my face here and there. I flexed my face to see what caused them, and there is was — smiling.
Annoying to have the lines, of course, but how could I not wear them with pride?
Second to this, I have to think of all the little marks on my hands and legs, all those small scars you pick up over the years, doing this or that — an accident in art class, a fall during a sports practice.
While I can remember my mother, at the time, saying not to do this or that because it could leave a scar, I never minded much. (Perhaps seeing it more as my own version of a tattoo?) I look at each of those scars now and can remember the moment when each happened (usually easy to recall due to the pain at the time of the event).
They bring sweet memories of the team I was on at the time and often offer up fun stories for those who have met me since.
It’s for all these reasons, and so many more, that it’s crucial to love one’s whole self, inside and out. Your body is your vessel, showing the dings and scrapes it’s acquired throughout the years as you journey through this awesome thing we call life.
Wear it with pride!