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Jamie Ridler asks, which hunger do you wish to feed?  I wish to feed my body’s cravings for movement, for sensuality, for erotic energy. I can feel that my body is starved in these areas and it is often difficult for me to learn how to feed myself in these ways, after being so disconnected from my body most of my life.

It is not about sex, or masturbation or being with someone. It is about being with me and my own energy. I do not yet understand how to be with myself completely. How can I experience intimacy with my body, how can I be attuned to its rhythms, how can I learn to listen to it’s call for fresh air, for a walk, for its emotional hunger, for touch, for soothing….and so on. How can I pay attention more and not just listen but give it what it needs.

I can feel that my body needs to move because when it does, when I take that short walk to the market, it is as if it just wants to keep going and going. I can feel the need for a long hot bath, the need for my skin to luxuriate in lotion, the need to feel warmth against my body. I crave the rocking of my hips that I only allow when I dance. I crave the abandon I feel when I let go into the music. I crave the life force flowing through me, the rush of excitement, the rush of my heart pumping, the trembling in my belly, the buzzing in my head, the sensations of being alive, of being used well by the Divine, creativity flowing. 

I deny myself these things at times. I don’t always listen to the call of my body and I wonder what is it in me that says no, you don’t need that, no you don’t want that. Fear? Fear of activation, fear of making too much noise, fear of being too alive, fear of it going all so wrong.

I am still the trapped little girl from the Bronx in the dark apartment, in fear of the next violation. I am still playing dead, like the prey protecting itself.

And so I need permission, before I can feed the hunger. Permission to breathe, to breathe heavy and fast, to have a heart that beats, legs that move, a head that buzz, an excited and hopeful heart.  I need permission to be in this body, to stay.

I came into this world and I was told, my body was not my own. I came into this world and had to hold my breath in fear every single day of my young life. I am still holding my breath, despite the practice of deep breaths. I still catch myself ignoring my body, despite the recognition of the importance of embodiment, and the experience of it. I still need practice.  I still need to return again and again to breath, to embodiment, to presence, to the here and now and my place in it. I hold myself in compassion in the place I am at while holding the wish for more.

What hunger do you wish to feed?