Dear Body December

Thank you, Megan February ('For Women Who Roar', 'Book Year'), for providing the prompts throughout December 2021 for this month-long intuitive writing / body love and appreciation challenge.


.:..:..:..:.


Day 1


Dear Body, (An Opening Letter):



I am still learning to love you wholly and unconditionally, though it becomes a bit easier every day. ... You often know what I need before I know it in mind; when I begin to listen and center my Soul within your capable, caring hands, I recognize all the wisdom you possess.


Dear Body, thank you for never leaving me behind. For continuing onward despite it all; often with splintered and bleeding feet, cracked palms and a dry, constricted throat - you have helped me find my voice again and recognize I am never alone.


Dear Body, with this pact may we begin a new relationship; an infinite prayer of everlasting love.

.:.


Day 2




These Hands

a delicate touch

or a dangerous grip

~these hands have known both~

:: taught to please

and protect ::

collect blood but not break


((inflicting pain on this body

a betrayal and wound

I won't soon forget; scars

become a map these fingers

can trace by heart, even in

the dark))

grasping tight to all

I possess, except

that which I cannot hold


only felt (beyond physical)

these hands tell my stories

fold paper, pull thread

tie rope just tight enough

before the bonds are

> too much <

loop circles, a whirlpool of desires


torn hearts from chests

and the ignition of a flame

one matchbox strike,

a stone on flint

the fires reflected in my eyes

glow golden as you, hands,

dance deftly over the heat,

between and beyond

echoes of memory in your veins.


.:.


Day 3


Hunger


Hunger is our primal instinct alerting our body we need nourishment and energy... for many of us, we have learned to fear hunger and attempt to stifle the intuitive call to eat/nourish. It's the most basic form of nurturing our physical self. Hunger takes us back to our roots, when we had to forage and hunt to survive. In our modern society, we have moved away from this primal instinct but hunger still plays a pivotal role in our lives. If you are accepted (like pack animals), you will be protected, have a higher chance of survival (and more). We hunger for dreams, goals, success. We ache to fill an imaginary (and often very real) void, hungry to prove ourselves worthy and deserving. I hunger to feel alive and cultivate peace within. I hunger for pleasure. I hunger for recognition; to release my poetry into the world to help heal through words and feed the souls of those who find divinity within the words. Hunger takes many forms and patterns - not only for food but a deep ache for love, affection, and to be seen, heard, witnessed....


.:.


Day 4


Wrinkles symbolize wisdom, the lines to mark our most joyful moments as well as all the ways we grow - sometimes painful, this growth. My mother always taught me to put lotion on my skin after every shower, lamenting at the wrinkles around her eyes that symbolize a long-weathered life,. The wrinkles that appear around my eyes, too, tell stories of laughter and joy, stretch marks on my thighs a reminder of all my body has been asked to hold. My wrinkles tell a tale of endurance, a map of emotions long past, or experienced each moment. Pruned skin of my hands wrinkled from water, a long soak and delicate play. We return again to all the memories; trauma wrinkling the skin like paper, origami folds turned into art: a greater mosaic after every shatter. We are glued back together with gold, only wrinkles to reveal our pains. My mother said her body never recovered after childbirth, wrinkles of time patched on her skin. I wish I could trace each wrinkle back to the memory of what made her laugh, what made her cry ... what made her incapable of seeing all the beauty radiating from her skin. ... I notice these wrinkles coming onto my skin as I celebrate my 29th year and all they represent. A life well lived, movement and excitement and love. Loss, too, and the ability to carry on, to love myself with each wrinkle that appears and embrace the wisdom and memories affixed to each one.


.:.


Day 5


Alive, invigorated

The smell of fresh air

fills my lungs

a promise, declaration

to the Freedom,

the thrill of this movement

excitement embodied

>>>love & lust<<<

controlled limbic shapes

a shining shadow

moves alongside,

grip hands and skip

through the forest

large birch trees stretch

and glide....


.:.:.


The way we move is like

a calm stream, delicate motion

controlled as a mirror reflection

(I'll follow you, Body, wherever you go).

the air flowing through my lungs

a warm breath, a cloud of love

billows out to surround us like a

blizzard, gentle and glorious

sweeping us out to sea in a ship

of joy, floating warm and golden

as we greet the horizon, a rainbow

overhead.


.:.


Day 6

An image of the sun setting over Calton High, the city Edinburgh in the background and a statue with 4 pillars silhouetted against the sky.

My eyes have seen so much, but my favorite thing is the sunsets and sunrises that unfurl like a rose above/below the horizon. folds of color on each new layer, enough to make me breathless, a gentle desire, dreams and heartache; LOVE wrapped into the glorious colors. I dream of seeing the Northern Lights but for now I am content with my Danish sunset over Båring Strand, the crescent moon already risen in the sky, gentle pinks and soft orange setting off the deep blue ocean and suddenly I am tiny; the sky stretching limitless overhead. The sunset we watched over Calton Hill in Edinburgh, my future husband at my side. From that view, you could see the entire city. An awakening, even as the sun gradually lowered itself and we caught the final glimpse of light, clinking beer glasses with fingers linked, precious moments we cherished after living across an ocean.



.:.


Day 7




My heart is set on seeing the world... but I'll settle for simple choice sights that feel sacred to my soul, the ones that live in endless dreams: the Egyptian pyramids and temples, hieroglyphs carved into ancient walls; Greek architecture and the shimmering turquoise waters of the Maldives... Most of all, the swirling, seductive colors of the Aurora Borealis igniting the sky aflame. I want to sway beneath their enchanting dance as it lights up my sight, encompassing and consuming as I join their enchanting dance and breathe in the sharp cold of the Icelandic or Norwegian air. I am a being full of wanderlust and desire; insatiable is this hunger to see it all, experience with my own eyes the great sights that captivate hearts all across the world. For my eyes to hold these cherished sights and find glorious inspiration across the globe...



.:.


Day 8


My body feels like a coiled serpent, ready to strike - power circling in my muscles, begging to be set free; a sturdy oak rising among a forest, swaying in a gentle breeze and whispering my secrets to the wind; a delicate unraveling rope as I puddle to the floor, release the tension of my limbs and break free my bonds which limit free movement... my body feels like a river, satin water flowing as I allow myself to float downstream; a solid rock grounded into the Earth; a mountain rising above desertlands. My body feels like an ocean, waves of emotions dragging me deep, holding me steadfast until I burst free from the surface sputtering love notes as music. My body feels like a map, each scar and mole creates topography to trace, memorize and learn, continually leading me home.


My body tastes like Palo Santo smoke and candles streaming through the air to lie trapped on my skin: warm vanilla and cinnamon. My body tastes of salt from tears and sweat; the deep iron of blood being shed in a new death which evokes rebirth to rise. The taste of dreams if they had a flavor, and desires ready to lift off into the ether.


My body smells like the tang of spice and pine; fresh air caught in strands of my hair from a wintery walk in the woods. The aftermath of a fire lit from within; dragon's breath and lavender oils rubbed into skin.


My body looks like a rose in full-bloom, so very alive with a blush across my cheeks, smooth skin marked by blemishes and scars, imitating beyond the ordinary - freckles that appear more often in summertime, hibernate in winter. My body is a reflection of internal beauty, a shining emblem of hope and all the embers we have walked through; weight appearing again at my waist and thighs. My body looks like an offering to some but to me, it is sanctuary; shelter in every storm.


My body sounds like a drumbeat, each rhythm of my heart vibrating through veins. The breath flowing through throat and lungs a whistle, a rushing stream over rocks worn smooth. My body creaks as I flick each wrist, protests with a whine as I lift it into shape - asanas and mudras to remind me I am sacred as I fold, twist and dance. The steady sound of my feet as they break bread with the earth, the rush of my fingers across the keyboard, a calm lullaby of truth and creation. My body is music, a serenade.


.:.


Day 9


{Trigger Warning: sexual trauma & abuse//self-harm}


My Body Remembers


🔻 [What does your body remember? Whisper to you in the dead of night? Are you listening? Holding space for yourself?] 🔻

(Live reading on my Instagram).


My body remembers a time when it could not relax for a moment, holding tension throughout the day and exhausting itself through trying to protect me. My body remembers being taken as if an object at another's disposal, the pain of deep betrayal and even the hands around my throat. My body has muscle memory and still clenches at the unexpected nearness of strange men... there was a time I did not love or respect my body and gave it willingly, trying to find my own worth in satisfying another's needs. {my body remembers this}. It still recalls the cold tiles of the floor and sharp metallic scissors as I fought against myself. All the earthquakes of tears that once shook me into splitting, shattering and nearly crumbling. My body also remembers the feeling of liberation so strong I swore if I lifted my arms, I would soar into the sky. My body remembers the cradle of my mother's arms wrapped tight around me and how desperately I wanted to stay there. The feeling of shrinking and growing, paralyzed as the room lengthened around me - as if gravity itself had become unhinged; the sparks of fireworks behind my eyelids. My body remembers a time when it was not safe to take up space or speak my mind; a closed throat over my truth that sometimes my tongue still stumbles on.


.:.


Day 10

Dear Body,


I am here. Home. I am safe & secure, and so very loved. I respect this vessel that connects me to the Earth and offer it sustenance. I offer you, dear Body, all you request: nourishment and compassion, gentle understanding. Dear Body, you have carried my soul this far and we still havea much longer path to traverse. I don't expect it to be easy, but I promise to hold you tight as often as you need, to come back to my essence and remember who I am - all you allow me to be, all you offer and grant me. I believe in you, your ability to heal, release and let go all that should be untethered for us to move forward together. I commit myself to you as a partner and friend, as a lover who knows all your deepest desires and secrets.


I whisper to you as we struggle to sleep, rock you with a lullaby and remind you we are safe even when you react to outside triggers, memories of all the times we were not - all the tears we have shed together and all the laughter, too. I hold you tightly, as I offer you infinite friendship and undeniable love. Together, we can combat any challenges that arise. I trust in you, body, and will help you unravel the signals caused by years of trauma, to break down the walls we have built but still uphold careful boundaries, to remind you to open your heart even when you feel safer to close off. I forgive you for all the times I felt you betrayed me and recognize this was never the truth. You have always protected me and fought to keep me safe, grounded and secure.


I love you. I respect you. I will no longer speak negatively to or about you; I will dress your wounds and listen when you tell me what you need. Most of all, I will learn how to listen to that deep intuitive calling of my gut instinct - always steering me in the right direction. I will honor each emotion that arises within you and allow it to pass through, embody it and learn from it to speak with my fear until I fully understand. You are a miracle, and I keep looking elsewhere for the magic, when it's right here before me, reflecting back in the mirror. You offer me this life and I will always be grateful for all you allow me to experience.


.:.


Day 11


My hair waterfalls down my back, ripples in the wind. It calms me like a strand of silk twisted between my fingers. My mother used to tell me I would clutch her hair as a baby for security. Hers was raven-black, now gone silver. Mine is a deep chestnut brown, natural red highlights in the sun. I always wished my hair was curly instead of straight, thicker like my mom and sister, but as I grow older, I also grow to love and cherish my hair. Twirling its strands between my fingers and also loving the hair on my body that is neither worshipped nor accepted. The hair between my legs; once scoffed at and shunned. It is curly and thick, as I once wished my hair could be.


.:.


Day 12


Dear Face,


I love you for all you represent and all you have seen me through. I know you may not be “perfect” but I no longer wish you to be. I love you for each blemish; each freckle and birthmark. I love you for each wrinkle around your eyes. I love the glint in your gaze when you feel excited and the way you have softened, no longer looking so tense and anxious. There is a warmth to you now that was never there before, a confidence in your own ability to heal and overcome intense pain— the trauma once lived in your eyes, in the tense set of your muscles, but now I can see the deep reverence you hold for life. I used to hate gazing upon you but now I love what I see; an ease and peace within yourSelf has changed the way you perceive me to be and all I am willing to do to keep us safe, aligned and grounded.


.:.


Day 13


Dear Teeth,


You were always a source of anxiety and insecurity for me. You wore braces at a young age and then a retainer for many years, but when I was growing up, my two front teeth were completely crooked. I still feel ashamed when I speak about it — I was incredibly self-conscious about my smile and never wanted to show anyone my teeth (you, dear teeth). Even now I hesitate though they are straightened and even my “fang” which has a cap on it (something I resisted at the time— I was in full stage vampire love, but my mom told me I would appreciate having it later, which I suppose I do). I still have a gap on the bottom row of teeth, and have had many teeth pulled over the years. I never liked my teeth but am gradually learning to love you, to allow a full, uninhibited smile to light my face. What joy it brings me and always spreads to others with an authentic smile.


.:.


Day 14


I have always coveted the act of writing by hand; there is nothing quite like it. I used to write out old novels by hand and type them up (since transitioned from this), but still take handwritten notes for all my projects, and have a strong intuitive desire to always begin writing my poetry in my own hand. I used to have a callous on my finger from holding my pen so tight, which has since hardened into a normal feeling for me. I love the flow of handwriting, I have always changed my style throughout the years and feel a deep connection to both the words I write, as well as my body, when I take a pen up in hand and begin to write....



((I also adore the smell of fresh ink on the page, the feeling of words bubbling on the paper as I run my fingers over them.))



.:.


Day 15:

Ode to my Stomach


it hasn't always been easy

to fill you and nourish you

or to feel the cues of hunger

that you send me after years

of not getting enough...

in fact, I would say it's

never been easy at all to

feel joy in filling the endless void

or find worth in discovering food

when you grumble & complain

my first instinct is denial -

the opposite of primal need

to survive; a learned behavior

and now, I am listening to each

cry for attention. I am loving you

even as you grow, and maybe

especially, all the more.


.:.


Day 16:


Wolf & I




.:.


Day 17:


Metamorphose


a renascence of love

as droplets fall upon flesh

dancing beneath thunder, a

lightning flares internal; kindled

by the drops like rain-kisses

invoking my soul to venture out

from her cavern, hollow throat

and open heart to all the world

offers - revived, reincarnated

beneath warm waters, splash of

cold to transform each nerve

into feeling, breathing, exalting

anew. a persistent, tenacious

grip on what it means to cleanse

and restore belief. absolve me

of past sins, transgressions of

self-abandonment; one certainty

I¬/o've discovered without doubt

is who I am, who I want to be

and all I can become.


.:.


Day 18:


'What do you see in me?'


A vulnerable ask (which I first hesitated to share), resulted in some beautiful responses.

I cannot thank all those who commented from the heart enough; the only person I solicited with this question was my partner, and he was at first confused why I was asking. The others came completely unexpected, and filled me with a tone of awe and love - thank you for sharing your light with me, for seeing me, for joining me and being so beautiful yourselves.


My partner: loving, caring, empathetic, humble. 'I admire your spirit that keeps you going when you get knocked down. You're very resilient but don't always recognize how resilient you are.'


Robyn H.: 'I see a powerful, multifaceted beautiful lady, with so much strength as well as softness.'


Neel T.: 'I see but more importantly I feel a beautiful, strong wolfwoman whose howls can beckon any desire to come true if she just believes in herself. Also an empath whose aura heals & spreads rays of hope to those who are around here & understand her beyond the skin.'


Mike C.: 'I see beauty that has not always believed this, who had gone on a inner journey to believe what good people used to tell her that she now allows in. The learnings of her own life are a demonstration for others to love and appreciate every part of their body, especially the flaws showing us the individuality in us all. There was a time this would have been a far distant place and through inner work she made that place the present.'


Ryan: 'I see freedom of self.'


L Sebastienne: 'I see a brave soul pushing back against what her social self has been taught - to be chaste, to be covered, to be shameful, to be augmented, to be starved, to be perfect and available to be dissected by the male gaze, wielded by judgmental and fear filled women. I see all selves acting as one and being whole in her expression. I see a woman. I see a girl and I see her fierce adherence to joy. She takes joy in her body and expresses it like sparks of a fire. I see a goddess and a sweet dear person who is not afraid.'


.:.


Day 19


To My Throat,


Roar of truth splits from my throat, its roots finding home in my belly. I find my voice again and again, after losing what I thought was mine; everything that belonged to me can never be taken away - my voice among the most dear. I always knew I could howl as high and long as any wolf, roar as fierce as any lion, and sing as delicate as a bird - true notes of "I love you", until I found the One to say it to("jeg elsker dig"). Embers from the pit of me rush up and out my throat - I am both fierce and soft as I find my tongue, honest and bold. Even when my voice shakes like the earth trembles, I find my way back home to all I am within, light a steady fire in my gullet and breathe out flames into frosted air.


.:.


Day 20


Serenade to Battle Scars

To the scars that remind me to come home

and the ones that warn me to stay away

from certain crowds that suck my energy;

Each mark upon this skin becomes everlasting,

tells a different story but none more than

the scars that remain invisible, only known

by me: each time my heart shattered and I

repaired it into a mosaic, still whole but just

a little bruised on its surface; the scars

that go deep to my soul for each time I abandoned myself to the darkness

and let my body drown in an ocean of

deep emotions instead of pulling myself

back up again. I used to love the phrase

”scars are like tattoos but with better stories”—

it just took me nearly three decades to realize

we don’t get to choose our scars or what

leaves its mark upon us; we carry on but it’s

always with a sign that a battle was waged—

and won.