Pumping away on the elliptical I feel I can almost let go of the heartrate sensor handles and fly! The music is so good on my nine-year-old son's ipod which I have stored music upon and absconded with for the fifth time this month that I simply can't deny it's inherent animalistic rhythm; I'm moving to the beat and heck yes, it feels good.
Glancing over at the mirror I am alternately proud to actually recognize myself as seeming somewhat familiar and caught off guard by the height and width of myself. It's just not possible that we are all shaped so differently - how can it be? I glance around the gym - a woman immediately in front of me is rail thin on top, from her neck to her bottom, where she rounds out immensely, almost overcompensating for the lack of the top portion of herself. Another, older woman is as small as a china doll but looks as if she could be made of iron. Her sweat cascades from her brow and chest like so much rainfall, and she runs faster than a deer darting into the woods out of the way of oncoming traffic.
Our bodies are not ourselves. Yet so much of our time is spent confronting our hunger and our pain, our physical discomfort and pleasure, our medical problems and our monthly changes, our hormones and our hair.
As I crank my Stevie Wonder, I can't help but harken back to the science fiction book I read years ago, wherein people could change their gender and their entire look if they desired. It was so intriguing as I read it and even more so now; how satisfying would it be to slip into another woman's height, for example? With the identical brain, heart, thought patterns and taste in art, yet stunningly tall and rail thin. http://io9.com/5216703/10-authors-who-put-sex-in-their-science-fiction. It's not hard to imagine. In fact, I imagine all sorts of things, from changing my race to my gender, to my age and my nationality. It's uplifting. Taking this a step further, I'm sure I'd appreciate my birth body even more once I'd gone through all those switches. Still it'd be nice to be tall for even just a little while, just to see what the view may be like from way up there.