Really any body but mine. I seek the refuge of a body with many characteristics, some of them I used to call my own.
I seek a body that doesn’t become ill at the slightest ounce of oncoming stress. One whose sinuses don’t revolt just because I’ve worked a 50 hour week.
I seek a body that doesn’t tire so completely at 9 pm. One, in fact, that could imagine venturing out past dark for some night time excursion or an evening of dancing.
I seek a body that requires only moderate control over the safety of its surroundings. By safety, I do not mean dimly lit alleys. Instead, I mean the notion of needing absolutely control over every boundary of a home. If the body applying experiences anxiety over shoes left on or lights left off or whether the oven might burn the house down even though it hasn’t been turned on all weekend…please do not inquire further.
I seek a body ready for last minute adventures and sarcastic comments, a body not easily bruised, or weathered, or worn.
Dear Body…like I said, really any body but mine. Please inquire further if you can sleep less than 7 hours and still leap from bed chipper and awake. Dear Body, please inquire further if the circles under your eyes have not been painted on by chemo and stress.
…Sure, the body I have now works. It moves and bends and runs about. It just has such strict hours of operation and the worst tolerance for emotional discomfort without crying fatigue and melting all over the place.
Dear Body, really any body but mine…
How would you respond to the writing prompt, “Dear Body,…” ?
This writing comes directly from one of our participants in our Unspoken Ink Creative Writing Group for young adult cancer survivors. The participants met for 2 hours each week, for 10 weeks during our Spring 2016 session. This writing has not been edited since its original creation, showing the wonderfully raw and powerful prose coming from the courageous writing group participants each week.