• Melissa Gombola

Honor Your Body

"Tell your daughters how you love your body. Tell them how they must love theirs. Tell them to be proud of every bit of themselves - from their tiger stripes to the soft flesh of their thighs, whether there is a little of them or a lot, whether freckles cover their face or not, whether their curves are plentiful or slim, whether their hair is thick, curly, straight, long or short. Tell them how they inherited their ancestors' souls in their smiles, that their eyes carry countries that breathed life into history, that the swing of their hips does not determine their destiny. Tell them never to listen when bodies are critiqued. Tell them every woman's body is beautiful because every woman's soul is unique."

~ Nikita Gill

I stretch out to all four corners of my yoga mat. I open up my heart and my mind and my body. I don't need to make myself small. I take up as much space as I need. I am big and bold and wide. The ground holds me. I am unashamed of the space that my body occupies in the world.

Sometimes I believe this. And sometimes I'm lying to myself. I have good days and days when I doubt. When I worry. That I'm not enough. Or that I'm too much.

I breathe in, I fill up, I expand.

I breathe out, I let go, I release.

I look in the mirror today. I see the reflection that stares back at me. I exhale, I falter, I look down. I reconnect with my breath. I feel ashamed.

I glance back up. I inhale. I see me. Standing. Vulnerable. Holding steady. Balancing and breathing and trembling.

We dance together, moving with our breaths. Everyone a chorus.

I am on my mat. Feeling stronger. And building together. As one becomes many becomes us all.

I see the reflection looking back at me. And I smile.

The light, the love and the beauty within me magnifies the light, the love and the beauty within you.


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