Mapping My Inner Terrain Via My Body

Kathy Stilwell-GracePlays
2 min readOct 28, 2020

Since encountering The Body Is Not An Apology by Sonya Renee Taylor on Brene Brown’s podcast, my inner terrain has changed; forever altered by a new way of seeing, borne from another’s creative ideas conveyed through words…through conversation.

Inhabiting my physical body;

becoming better acquainted with her little by little…

whisper by whisper.

I’m happy to hear some of what she says; like “don’t forget to breathe”, and “Relax, you can do this”.

Some I want to reject with all my might; such as, “do you really need all that wine?.”

Yes! I want to shout!! Don’t you dare take away this pleasure.

But.

How can I possibly reject my own body? … the “temple of my familiar”, the “close in” ground beneath my feet?

In this new terrain, I truly cannot.

Listening and learning feels vital.

Radical self love sounds so, well, LOUD. It sounds so UNAPOLOGETIC. And that’s the point. Nonetheless I can feel my older self cringe with an automatic urge to disappear…to go offline…fade into the comfortable background of obscurity and uniformity where I’m safe from prying, criticizing eyes and voices.

As I write these words, I identify the location of those criticizing eyes. At first glance, they seem over there to my right…in some perceived audience or jury. It’s then, I realize they are a reflection coming from within. I am sitting here alone, with myself and my thoughts. My thoughts are a mirror. Any “presence”, in reality, is a figment of my imagination created by me.

So much of what goes on at the intersection of my inner and outer world is a result of programming laid down haphazardly and without my informed consent. Whatever or whoever enters the field, affects it either consciously or unconsciously.

I am not my thoughts and I am not my actions which means, this terrain can be altered/altared to conjure another, more intentional and authentic reality.

My body…my pure, sweet, whole-hearted, wide open loving body…entered this world naked and defenseless. The indoctrination began immediately. Now, decades later, with layers and layers of paint covering the original, true image, I have an opportunity to return to that genuine masterpiece…the priceless creation…the original intent…the one, true, authentic design.

The map guiding me back is located right here within my cellular reality. I’m going to pack light and embark on this journey. Forging a partnership with this exquisite vessel of life is key to unlocking and restoring me to original beauty.

A giant thanks to Brene Brown, who has been the instigator of whole heartedness and life enhancing information for me over and over again. I also want to thank Sonya Renee Taylor for her life changing words.

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