a nobody, a somebody, an aging and injured body, a running and swimming body, a thinking body and a body thinking, an assemblage of organs and joints and muscles and bones and feelings and thoughts and memories, a collective body
Run a digital story
the body electric/ Sara Lynne Puotinen
This body, my body, is not any body and it is not the body. It is just a body, a somebody who is happily a nobody, running and flying and floating free, feeling the sizzle of the sand under my feet on the path and the howl of the wind rushing by my ears, passing under the shadows of the towering tree in the midst of other bodies, who are somebodies and nobodies as well but who feel the earth and the sky, just the same but differently too. Each of us an I. A self. A soul. A body. But also a we. Selves. Souls communing. Charged bodies with electrons flowing freely. The Body Electric.
I am not afraid of dying/ sara lynne puotinen
I am not afraid of dying.
I am afraid of living
for the next 3 or 4 decades
with an aching middle finger.
Is it arthritis? Nobody told me
how your body slowly falls apart
and you spend much of your life
its decline. Some people fear oblivion–
the great eraser. I do not.
I fear pain and the small
gradual ways I learn to accept
and adapt to a breaking body.
the brain and neural maps (from august 18, 2017)
When the doctor told me that fear of pain was preventing my brain from sending the proper signals to my quads to activate, my first reaction was “wow.” Mind blown. I never would have expected my brain, and not my knee, to be the real problem here. So much to think about in terms of the relationship between the mind, the brain and other parts of the body. At the outset of my Run! writing project, I wanted to experiment with how I imagine and experience the relationship between mind and body. I wonder where, if at all, the mind fits into my current quad problem? Is there a conscious element to the fear of pain and the brain? Or, is it unconscious? Is a lack of will the problem, at all?
“During your recovery period your brain has mapped out a new neural network for pain-free walking, which has become a habit.” Uh oh. Is that why my brain has done? Is that why I can’t lift my leg? I don’t want a new neural network, I want the old one!
“When you run your brain creates a ‘neural map’ that, through repetition, will dictate your ‘natural gait’.” There is nothing natural about my current gait, with my right leg that won’t quite bend (source).
Search words to use: “neural map running injury” “running injury body maps”
Neural map /Body Maps (the virtual body): “When you practice a movement, the body map representing the physical body part involved grows in size. However, if you stop using a particular body part, e.g. when you are injured and/or in pain, the body map for that particular body part becomes ‘blurred’ (also referred to as ‘smudged’).”