So glad to have Kara Jones sharing her ideas here with you today. Kara is such a beautiful creative soul and I know you’re just going to appreciate her healing prompt and artistic vision. She is also including a giveaway here today for oue readers, so be sure to read through to the end of the post for the details. xo. ~Beryl
When my son died at birth, I quickly checked out of my body. There was so much disappointment, so much grief, and feelings of how my body betrayed me and him entirely. Later on when talking with a local law maker about getting a state law changed for stillbirth documentation, I was told to my face that I did not give birth to a child. I was told I had a fetus and *it* was dead. The law makers were trying to intimidate and shame me — and other mothers like me — into being quiet, leaving them alone, to cease our efforts in the fight for women’s rights. While I knew intellectually what they were doing, it was hard on me emotionally because I was still in a crisis of faith about how my body failed me. With time, conscious processing, and art making, I’ve been able to explore these issues and try to find ways back into my Power.
So today’s prompt is a share for you to explore your relationship with body. Of course this could work for anyone, but I’m also offering this specifically to women who’ve had pregnancy or infant death losses. Just seems to me that this kind of loss complicates our relationships with our bodies, and however empowered we felt prior to the death, there is some shake up with our bodies in grief’s wake. So here’s how you can creatively explore this:
- The first thing you need is the outline of your body or a body shape you feel represents you. You can either:
-Get large sheets of butcher paper on which you outline your real body, full size. This can be a very powerful way to work because you are looking at your actual body shape.
-OR you can do line drawings in a more representative shape — click the image at the top of this post to see full size version. You’ll see that I used a very simple outline. For me, this worked to show the plump, roundness of my body – and it also showed how dis-empowered I felt in my arms. Empty arms idea.
- Once you have your body shape, duplicate it three times.
- Then consider how you feel/felt in your body
1) at the moment of trauma,
2) when in an unsafe environment, and
3) when you feel like you are in a safe environment
- Ask yourself what color represents each of these times? Consider how your body felt in each of these times? Are there areas that felt achy or soothed? Are there words to represent various parts of your body? What did the areas surrounding your body feel like?