Friday, January 20, 2012

A Curious Body and Mine

Tonight a friend looked at me from across the table.
"You're different. What is it? You've lost lots of weight."
"Dunno. What am I doing differently? I've stopped fishing."
My favourite jeans are falling off me. Whenever this happens I think that the denim is getting looser in its weave or stretch. I never suspect the opposite, that my body is shrinking away from them.
"You're leaner, curvier, more girly, or something."
"I've stopped fishing. That's all."
"That's it. You were always pumped. You're losing all that muscle. " He stopped and looked at me again. "What are you going to do now?"
"Oh, I don't know! Ride my bike more?"

My fingernails are growing. Years of wearing briny wet gloves have softened them to a constantly tearable state that included strange fungal incursions into the quicks. Three weeks after giving up the fishing I've realised I'm going to have to file them or cut them or something, because they're growing harder and stronger every day.

My hair and skin, oddly, is drier and less healthy, despite all the salt and windburn that they copped on the boat.

When I first started fishing, my body muscled up within weeks and then hardened into a well oiled net-hauling machine. She repossessed the memory from my adolescent years of swimming, canoeing and running.

I quite like these sudden life changes and watching how this body I'm living in adapts to them. Pregnancy, working a lawnmowing round, fishing, setting up garden centres, running, sitting on my arse studying, breastfeeding, courier driving ...
... They are the most curious, intuitive things, aren't they, our bodies?


  1. aren't they just...
    your words provide a fitting exclamation mark to the current musings about inhabiting this body more vigorously :}

  2. Your body is finely tuned Sarah. Did you feel more muscley when you were fishing?

  3. After spending periods of my life surfing every day for many months, then having to go back to working full-time and surfing part-time, the trick for me seems to be in adapting and embracing the changes. You seem to be doing this and I salute you.

  4. after 3 weeks on a diet....I am just amazed that I can now get my pants on

  5. Interesting. The body sure does adapt. I just wish it didn't adapt so willingly to gravity :/ :)

  6. And adapt quickly too. That always blows me away.
    And yes, MF, gravity sucks.

  7. A few people have said the word adapt. Which seems to me to mean that the body shape/change is an after thought of external change. Not to sure about this, Maybe I have got this wrong, but what if the body is purely just a physical manifestation of whats going on the internal. In this case sara is focusing on study and writing - the more feminine and so she manifests it..blah blah blah..

  8. Adaptation is never an afterthought, Annie!