Your soft animal body and your innate survival programing respond to trauma and oppression as a threat to life. Our stress-system response came factory pre-installed. The domination over-culture is the problem, not you.
Our nervous systems are hard wired to respond to threat.
Oppression is meant to interrupt and disorder our relationships with our body. The primary tool used to separate and divide us (“divide and conquer”) is based on our bodies: be it our skin color, the physical location our body took it’s first life giving breath, the sex we were assigned at birth, our weight, or our age, who we love and how…
Daily, our bodies contend with the assault of rampant body-based oppression in the form of racial profiling, inaccessibility for folx with disabilities, immigration bans, disproportionate sentencing for people of color, widespread behavior-management drugs for our youth, gender based violence, fat shaming, unequal pay for women, surveillance on Muslim communities, forced deportation, gay conversion therapy, the repeal of reproductive rights, bathroom bans, criminalization of personal healthcare choices… The list goes on and on.
I’m working to build a culture of collective care:
with processes in place to repair and restore the harms that inevitably happen along the way.
It starts with tending to my nervous system, acknowledging the trauma imprint on my body and building relationships that restore trust, safety, choice and power. It requires saying “oops,” “ouch,” “I’m sorry” and asking, “What do I need to do to repair harm and restore this relationship?” It requires the courage to walk through the process without giving up or running away. (First with our bodies, and then with each other.)
We heal through relationship.
I want to expand a circle of care and compassion for our triggered, reactive, sub-optimal behavior as wide as the ocean is deep.
Our bodies and psyche are simply trying to deal with a civilization rife with profound stress, systemic injustice, overwhelming body-based oppression and ubiquitous trauma.
Of course we have trauma.
Of course so many of us walk through the world having internalized tremendous body shame. Your body was never the problem. The problem has always been one of using our bodies against us to justify the assault on our humanity. Body-based oppression is the primary tool used to faction us into disfranchised parts. A body disempowered does not fight back.
Together, let us address structures of privilege and oppression and face the reality of who gets excluded and who benefits from that exclusion. Lets be willing to be less comfortable and more proactive to leverage power and advantage to foster justice, belonging, equity and health.
We need all of us on board, tending to each other and ourselves; compassionate and considerate of all the ways our bodies have been harmed.
We do this work in community. We do this work with support.
We do this work to come all the way home, to get all the way free.
Your body is the key.