group of people in an old car

Why Bother Claiming Your Body?

 I’ve owned, bought and sold a variety of cars; a Volkswagen, a V.W. Rabbit, a Falcon, a Cadillac and more than one Subaru. I’ve replaced my washing machine more times than I can count and we no longer own the same house that we started with. And though I know people can have knee and hip replacements, as well as liver and heart transplants, those “new” body parts still go inside the same body that the old parts came out of. 

Unlike cars, houses, appliances and maybe a few body parts, we’ve been given one body that we cannot replace. Instead, it is ours for keeps. 

One Body

I haven’t always paid close attention to my body. It didn’t seem like anything that needed my attention. It went wherever I wanted it to go and did whatever I wanted it to do. My body was capable of climbing trees, riding a bike or running around on the school playground trying not to get tagged.  

I may have been around seven or eight when I first took a really good look at my body and when I did, I was none too pleased. It happened one day at my cousin’s house. We were sitting on the floor playing with our Little Kiddles dolls and suddenly it dawned on me that even though my cousin and I were nearly the same age, I was bigger than she was. 

If I’d been a boy, I may have been proud of that fact. But I was a girl and the notion I’d gotten about girls was that we were supposed to be petite. Comparing myself to my cousin, I was far from petite. My legs were longer and rounder and my feet were ginormous. Except for the jolly part, I went home feeling like the jolly green giant.

There was no way I could stop myself from growing. As time went on, my legs grew longer and my feet got bigger. And though I was the youngest of the four girls in my family, I grew to be the tallest and my feet grew to be the biggest. 

I could never borrow any clothes or shoes from my sisters because they’d never fit me. Their shoes, skirts and sweaters would always be too small. 

One of my sister’s often teased me about how my feet were as big as boats and Mom was not very encouraging either. When I modeled a two piece bathing suit that I wanted to buy, she told me I looked like a giraffe. Oh my! I was a giraffe with boats for feet. 

Claiming my body as my own and making friends with it was a gradual process. But I attribute physical exercise as part of my transformation. I live inside a body that thrives on movement. When I swim, run, ride my bike or practice yoga, my legs and feet are an asset to my movement. I couldn’t do any of what I do without them. 

Since that day, long ago, when I first noticed the frame in which I resided and was none too pleased, I’ve since formed a friendship with it. It is the one the one and only body I will ever have and it will last me a lifetime.

Why bother claiming your body? The body you have is yours. Claiming it is your greatest asset. 


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A heart's journey to forgiveness book by Terese Luikens