Yellowstone | Where Soul Meets Body

Last week I watched the movie 127 Hours (big mistake. Basically the equivalent of watching Titanic before going on a cruise). But, I've been thinking about the main character a lot in the last couple of days; not in horror, but in admiration. He was a man who used his body - he loved it because of where it could take him.

 I'm not that kind of person. My body has never been something that I took pride in, or felt I actually possesed. It's not a product of what I do to it. I live in my head. I know the connection between learning and reading the newspaper. But, when I look down at my body all I see is a container. eh, this is my body. It works just fine.

Last night, I was lying in my sleeping bag, and Mr. Multitool came to my mind again. I haven't seen a mirror in nearly a week, but I'm beginning to feel a different kind of self confidence: a love for my body not because of what it looks like, because of what it does. I was imagining how it must have felt to look back at his arm. To look down and see nothing there. Like the phantom feeling after a haircut, reaching up to touch what's now just air. The surprise - and then remembering.

I thought about it being my arm; the same hand that holds a pen, that I've watched make letters purposefully and expertly across paper. Seeing a piece of my body that seems to move with out thinking, to express what's in my mind, laying there lifeless. With no connection to who I was at all.  

I know - that no matter how long I looked at it pinned under that rock - I wouldn't understand.
I'm here. But my hand is there.
my hand. mine.

 written on day three - of five - backpacking through Yellowstone |

(photos) on ilford b+w film with pentax k1000 


  1. Such a beautiful reflection. I feel much the same way about my own body; I've never had severe allergies or illnesses. I've never broken any bones or needed surgery. It serves its purpose so well.
    But then I think about all the hereditary risks in my family. Cancer, heart disease, blood disorders. What if my body turns on me, too?
    And suddenly, what I hadn't cared or thought about too much before is now something I take very personally.
    The physicality of our selves is a mystery to me, too.

    1. Bethany,
      exactly. It's not that I don't feel blessed by my health, but I am rarely able to step out of it long enough to think of it "mine". It just is.


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