Make Friends with Your 'Corporeal Form' in 2022
I came to visit some relatives after several months of personal hardship. I had gained a lot of weight in that period of time and was strongly aware of it, but I had also spent a lot of time trying to be okay with my body – no matter what shape it happened to be.
As soon as they saw me, an older relative gently touched my chin with their fingers, a soft smile on their face. It surprised me because I never thought of this person as someone who readily showed affection.
The words that came out of their mouth completely ruined what I thought was going to be a touching family moment.
Warped Carnival Mirror
I’ve almost always struggled with my weight and my relationship with my body. I remember thinking that I was overweight as early as 10 or 11 years old, just because I had a growth spurt and went through puberty earlier than most of my classmates.
My weight would fluctuate in the years to come, but I rarely had any concrete proof. I often refused to weigh myself, and when I did, I interpreted whatever number I saw on the scale as a number that was too large. When I looked in the mirror, I saw an overweight girl. Years later, I would browse through my photos and realize how skinny I had actually been. Even at my skinniest, I thought I was fat. I was always looking into a warped carnival mirror.
As I started gaining weight over the years, I developed many coping mechanisms to save myself from feeling insecure about my physical appearance. I would convince myself that I had simply gained confidence “despite my weight,” but I’d later realize that all I did was stop acknowledging my body altogether.
My Corporeal Form
I would call it “my corporeal form.” I regularly saw myself like a floating cloud of thoughts rather than a person with a body. The more I refused to acknowledge my body, the easier it was to treat it badly. More than neglecting to maintain a healthy diet and get any exercise, I was ignoring my body’s pleas for proper rest. I would frequently find myself in a lot of pain, sometimes to the point that I wouldn’t be able to get out of bed.
Last June, I experienced the worst pain that I had ever had to endure. I found myself finally having to acknowledge this body that so desperately yearned for my attention.
Pretending that something doesn’t exist is worse than hating it. As I was left with no choice but to look after my body, I began to realize that I was treating myself so badly for no reason. I realized that it was time to form a connection with my body, starting with recognizing that it is there, and that it needs care.
Making Friends With My Body
I still have a long way to go in repairing my relationship with my body, but I am slowly bridging the gaps. It is no longer just my corporeal form, but the body that is me, and the body that allows me to experience the world.
I am teaching myself to see and appreciate what ‘she’ does for me. I am being kinder and more careful with her. Slowly, I am making friends with her. And as I grow to love her, everything else will follow.