being a body. having a body.

It’s been an interesting few days.

For a while I’ve been trying to “be in touch with my body” more. I’m not sure what that means. I don’t know if it’s well defined. I think I have for a long time been kinda-in-touch with my body; like, I sometimes know “I feel bad but will feel better when I go outside even if I don’t feel like going outside” or “I will not eat that thing because I will feel worse, even though it seems good right now.” Also, I can meditate decently enough to where I can feel body sensations at a pretty fine granularity in space and time. (If I try, which I don’t very often.)

I’ve recently been able to feel my body more than that, which is cool. It feels good, mostly! I feel more energetic and positive; like, a little lighter. But it’s also a little incomprehensible; sometimes I don’t know what my body feels like, or why. I think I’m starting to become okay with the fact that this is just how the body operates. If I could translate all my feelings directly into words, they wouldn’t be feelings. Or like, if I want to “be able to listen to my body more”, but I’m only listening to things that are easily translated into words, I’m going to miss most of it.

I think about this three level model sometimes:
top level: thoughts
middle level: emotions
bottom level: body
A shallow experience is just at the level of thoughts. If it gets deeper, it feels emotional. Even deeper, and it’s something you just feel. Some things about this model:
- You can maybe translate +/- one level - like you can talk about emotions in the language of thoughts. But you can’t really talk about body feelings in the language of thoughts (or at least, I can’t).
- Trying to interact with something on the wrong level is just not going to work. Ever been feeling a way, and tried to think it out? Didn’t work, right? Sometimes just makes it worse.
- The deeper something is, the harder it is to work itself out. Thoughts can change quickly, emotions maybe after minutes or hours, but something that’s settled in your body takes a while to change. (I know, I’m just asserting that “things can be in your body” in a way that is uncomfortably squishy and inexact. I’m going to assume that this is a true thing that happens, at least for now, even though I can’t really describe how.)

Some other things that I’m feeling more recently, some of which are just platitudes:
- maybe discomfort is ok
- nothing lasts forever; if you don’t like now, just wait a few minutes
- I sometimes have to take up more space in the world than I currently let myself take
- the body doesn’t think, it just does. it’s almost like “my mind” and “my body” are two separate people both living in this same space, and we’ve got to learn to live well together.

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