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My Belly, My Friend

May 5, 2009

I talk with my hands. This is just one example of the strength of my mind-body connection. I don’t just think about things, I feel them, act them out. As much as my body is a part of the process of communicating my thoughts, it is also a part of the process of  receiving them.

Lately I have noticed a new habit. When I am stressed or uncomfortable about a situation (and sitting down), I reach for my belly.  I grab the little pudge of belly and button that hangs over my pants.  This is interesting to me for several reasons.

The first is that this pouch is a recent development. Not that it happened over night – it’s been in the works since freshman year- but still something I am getting used to. It is always  a pleasant surprise, finding something substantial to hold on to.

That is the next thing that surprises me. That I am always comforted by its presence, rather than worried about its appearance. My instinct isn’t to shame my Nutella indulgence or fondness of girl scout cookies. It is, strangely enough, to be grateful.

It’s like reaching out for a hand and feeling a tight squeeze as fingers close around yours, letting you know it is going to be okay. It’s like an affirmation, yes, you are here, and so am I. We are a team. We can handle this.

It’s like reaching out for your best friend, laughing about some good shared experience that only you two would understand. Or like having that best friend, whom you know will be there, patient and ready to understand you, and not judge.

Like my best friend, my belly doesn’t judge me for consuming those things which make me happy. It’s an experience we both remember fondly.

And I would rather remember it fondly than stress about what I have enjoyed.

I don’t know why my belly provides such comfort and support. But I am glad it does.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Jill permalink
    May 6, 2009 1:00 AM

    This is fantastic.

  2. cellardoor10 permalink
    May 6, 2009 11:59 AM

    Wow, I wish I could say when I do the same thing (reach around my belly when I’m nervous) that it was comforting. It’s a remnant of less confident days for me – sort of me hiding my most obviously vulnerable part.


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