hen I went through anorexia, I felt completely disconnected from my body. Almost like it didn’t belong to me. In some way, you lose touch with the warmth of your skin, its texture, its shape.
A few years after my eating disorder had started, I welcomed recovery. As I started to gain weight in recovery, I knew I had to learn how to reconnect with my body. Accepting to gain weight was an important step in my recovery and in therapy. But I realized that it wouldn’t be possible if I didn’t feel like my body was my home. I had to make it my home again.
Here are a few things I practiced to help me build a new relationship with my body.
- Massage your body every day.
Choose a lotion of which you like the scent and the texture. Focus on the parts of your body that you have a hard time accepting. Physical touch feels comforting. Take your time, take in any feeling that might move through you, sit with that feeling. If you feel upset because it’s difficult, it’s okay, welcome that feeling and continue to do it. You can write down what you are feeling. It will become easier with time.
- Buy yourself lingerie.
I didn’t buy it for anyone but myself. Choose one, two or three pieces and wear them at home. Take pictures of yourself if you want, watch a movie, read, draw. Do whatever you feel like doing, wear it for as long as you wish. When you look at yourself in the mirror, try to be compassionate with yourself. Remember, you are doing this for you, not for another person. And again, accept any feeling that comes to you, take a breath. Repetition is key. You will be more comfortable as you keep doing it.
- Take time to pleasure yourself.
This is one has been taboo, especially for women, but it’s important to take the time to pleasure yourself. We have to talk about it more often because it needs to be normalized. It is completely natural for women to masturbate and it helps us feel connected to our body. There are many ways that you can do it. You can use your hands, you can use a pillow, you can also use sex toys. There are hundreds of different kinds of sex toys you can play with. You can do it in your room or while you take a bath. There is absolutely no shame in pleasuring yourself and it will help.
All of these steps might be uncomfortable at first, it might feel wrong. But you have start with being uncomfortable to become comfortable. As you repeat these steps, it will slowly start to feel natural and you will feel more connected to your body.
If you start one of these steps and it is too difficult, try again later. Remember to be compassionate with yourself. Reconnecting with your body when we have felt so much hate towards it is not simple. You’re doing the best you can.
Remember that your body isn’t supposed to be good or bad, it just is. It’s your home.
~ Laura Désirée Mouroux [ lauradesiree ]