Body Image - Part 6
Conversations with My Skin, Heart & Blood

by May Bleeker, 13 March 2009

<--previous: Body Image
Part 1 - Discovering the metaphorical body
Part 2 - The metaphorical body speaking
Part 3 - Conversations with my toes and stomach
Part 4 - Conversation with my knees
Part 5 - Insights from my stomach

Different Characters, Different Qualities

In later conversations I discovered each part of my body has a different 'sound' or 'tone' - a different voice. I also discovered that the body loves being spoken to in a friendly way.

Conversation with My Skin

Some parts, like my skin, do not have language. It conveys meaning through subtle sense impressions. This seemed obvious after I figured it out - as the normal function of the skin is, partly, to process sensations.

But coming to this understanding was a gradual discovery for me. It only dawned on me as the conversation progressed. I was figuring things out as I went along.

At the beginning I assumed it would be like all the other conversations, which had all been in words or language-based ideas.

It surprised me when no words were forthcoming and there seemed to be limited understanding of my questions. I could tell there was a willingness to communicate, but it felt like I was talking to a mute.

Believe me, I know how weird this sounds. Its not that I feel my skin is separate from me (obviously!), or even that I 'heard voices' but only that I can somehow get in touch with information or intelligence contained in a 'metaphorical' equivalent of my skin and this metaphorical equivalent has certain qualities.

And a certain kind of communication can take place between me and this 'metaphor for skin' which allows me to understand those qualities.

In this case, one of the qualities that became apparent was that my 'metaphorical skin' can communicate, but not with language.

In physical terms this felt like trying to communicate with someone who can only make closed-mouthed sounds. Something is communicated in the tone and pitch, but not specific ideas. I cannot say more, because I have not yet been able to understand all that much from my skin. As I begin to understand these metaphorical body images (or symbolic ways of understanding my body) I hope to discover more.

Speaking of the Heart

My heart prefers to speak in pictures, emotions and sensations. Not words, although my heart understands them and as I now see it, my poetry and dreams flow from it.

Why do I think this? My dreams, and the act of writing poetry and painting all have a particular 'feel' to them. They 'feel' like they belong in the same family, or come from a similar place.

Sometimes when I read someone elses poems I get this same sensation, feel that same quality I associate with dreams.

While communicating with my heart, this quality was strongly present. I can liken it to a particular smell or sensation. You 'know' it, but somewhere in your bones or body, not in your head.

In fact, the language of my metaphorical body, or the metaphorical body image I've been describing to you in these pages is the same as my heart-language. Maybe the heart translates?

The pictures are clear and detailed and colourful. They are powerful because of the layers of emotion and sensation included in them. These can be hard to describe in words.

There is a depth to the pictures my heart shows me, that feels more real than everyday life. They seem to penetrate to something deeper than the pictures themselves. They feel like the most direct, complete and beautiful communication I've ever experienced.


Parts, like my blood, have a deep and far-reaching intelligence and connectedness to the world and everything in it that astounded me and made me feel very humble.

Blood seems very connected to love and all life forms in a rich and direct way. When I spoke to my blood for the first time (it was quite a while before it occurred to me that I could do this), the things it said to me moved me to tears.

Perhaps, when I am less shy about how strange all this seems, I will be able to post the conversations themselves for you to see.

<--previous: Body Image
Part 1 - Discovering the metaphorical body
Part 2 - The metaphorical body speaking
Part 3 - Conversations with my toes and stomach
Part 4 - Conversation with my knees
Part 5 - Insights from my stomach

-->nextBody Image
Part 7 - How conversations with my body improved my life

Return from Part 6 to Inner Body Image
Return from Body Image - Part 6 to Doorway To Self Esteem

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