I saw this post, Your Body Is Not Your Masterpiece, floating around yesterday on Facebook, via HuffPo.
I had every intention of writing a post and then, well, life happened. It’s probably pretty obvious that I’ve been struggling to maintain my blog lately … and that kills me. I like to produce [what I deem to be] thoughtful content or just share anecdotes of what’s going on or a reaction to something relevant to my blog audience … but I’m just not doing it. I know I should make it a commitment, but right now I feel pulled in 10,000 directions and the most important two directions are not getting any younger; they’re growing up before my eyes. So … I find myself blogging less. Living more.
I recently shared with a friend that I feel like I (and a bajillion other moms out there!!!) basically “work” five shifts in a day–and none are created nor treated equally. For example, I ebb and flow between crack-of-dawn workouts and super-late evening workouts, depending on our schedule any given week — but basically a workout is one shift, no matter the time, so long as it doesn’t take me away from my family. Then getting the kids out the door and the morning rush is another (usually fraught with at least one tantrum, if not two). The 9+ hour workday is another filled with all sorts of stressors (even though I genuinely enjoy what they do). The harried play-dinner-bath-bedtime routine is another (my fave! wish this was much longer!). And then there’s the housework/errands/prep for tomorrow/spend time with my husband after the kids go to sleep. By the time my head hits the pillow, I am out cold … only to repeat it all again in a couple hours.
It’s draining, and I’ve known for a while that something has to give, which is why the “paintbrush” article really resonated so much. In spite of what I say about being OK with my body, much of my focus and many of daily thoughts still revolve around food and fitness (i.e., body image) — not in the same obsessive way of years ago, but it’s still there — a little undercurrent, a ripple, that’s omnipresent. And I spend too much of my energy in that space, viewing my body as a “project”.
I needed to hear these words:
(Excerpt) Your body is not your masterpiece — your life is.
It is suggested to us a million times a day that our BODIES are PROJECTS. They aren’t. Our lives are. Our spirituality is. Our relationships are. Our work is.
Stop spending all day obsessing, cursing, perfecting your body like it’s all you’ve got to offer the world. Your body is not your art, it’s your paintbrush. Whether your paintbrush is a tall paintbrush or a thin paintbrush or a stocky paintbrush or a scratched up paintbrush is completely irrelevant. What is relevant is that YOU HAVE A PAINTBRUSH which can be used to transfer your insides onto the canvas of your life — where others can see it and be inspired and comforted by it.
I should be blessed by what I have instead of always attempting to reach some sort of body nirvana — one that I sabotage regularly by not eating as cleanly as I could, for example. But that’s the rub — I have a body that is strong. Healthy. It shouldn’t be viewed as a “work in progress,” as I texted to my workout buddy a couple nights ago. It should just be viewed as a body. One that can exercise, and eat — without worry about where my next meal will come from or if I have legs to carry me down the stairs.
I hope to get there. To appreciate my life for what it is and focus less on what doesn’t matter.
Sometimes we just need a perspective shift, and this piece was certainly one for me.
Your body is not your masterpiece — your life is.
How beautiful is that?!