How do I find appreciation for my body in my midlife years?

Fall Colors
Photograph by Kim Stokely

I woke up this morning and the patches of bright yellow leaves on the changing oak trees were like patches of sunshine in my window. I was drawn outside into the “glorious boldness” of Autumn’s colors. Autumn represents the insightful, mid-life years. It is the season to reflect on life, to find deep peace in silence and stillness, and to reconnect to the flow of energy. It is a time of letting go, surrendering and releasing. One of my favorite poems comes to mind.

 

Praying for Release

Autumn,
urge me to drop every leaf I don’t need –
every task of habit I repeat past its season,
every sorrow I rehearse,
each unfulfilled hope I recall,
every person or possession to which I cling –
until my branches are bare,
until I hold fast to nothing.

Blow me about in your wild iron sky,
crush all that’s puffed up,
fluff all that in me needs to go to seed,
send my shadows to sleep.

Tutor me through straining night winds
in the passion of moan and pant,
the gift of letting go
at the moment of most abundance –
in the way of falling apples, figs, maple leaves, pecans.

Open my eyes to your languid light,
let me stare in your face
until I see no difference between soar and fall,
until I recognize eternity in single breaths,
faint whispers of cool air through lungs.

Show me the way of dying
in glorious boldness –
Yellow, gold orange, rust, red burgundy, brown.

From
Exultation, a Poem Cycle in Celebration of the Seasons
by Monza Naff

It makes me wonder, what am I holding onto that is past its season in my life? What can I let go of? Where is the abundance in my life that I need to recognize and acknowledge?

Recently I started using our Rejuvenating Facial Formula. This may sound mundane and insignificant, but it was a significant moment for me of feeling an abundance of self-care. I can at times be neglectful of myself and my own care. I get so wrapped up in my creative projects that I forget to put the care of my body first. My wonderful body that supports me through this life, that gives me mobility, voice, appreciation of the sensuality of the world, and consciousness of the colors of oak trees in fall. Using this oil on my face made me pause and feel such loving care of my body. The oil is so soft. It gives me a feeling of deep calm and tranquility. It made me feel tenderness toward my middle-aged body that felt loving and dear.  I think it is these small tender acts that allow me to love and appreciate my body

How are you appreciating and caring for your body? Where are you feeling abundance in your life? What are you holding onto? What do you want to let go of?

I invite you to share your stories by commenting here.

With deep gratitude for this time of our lives, Kim