Art Therapy: Body Tracing

I don't think I have body image issues. I hate that I have a body and that I have to think about and take care of and deal with it, but I don't think I'm fat. I don't like my body, or having a body, but I've kind of accepted that it's always going to be that way.

Yesterday I had art therapy and we did a body tracing. I was reluctant, because my fear was that I was going to draw my body and then she was going to trace it, and it was going to be totally bigger than I thought. We decided that I wasn't going to draw my body, but instead she'd trace it and we'd go forward from there.

When I think of body tracings, my initial thought is most people think they're bigger than they are, and it's this big awakening moment where they find out that their body takes up less space than it actually does. That's not what happened for me. My body looked kind of like I expected it to, which was disappointing.

I don't think I'm fat, but I don't think I'm small. I think I'm average. I've been told that I'm small, and I wanted the image I saw to reflect what I've been told, or what my weight says. But it didn't. It was just an average body, with big hips and stubby legs. But I knew that I have stubby legs and big hips. I've been told that I have "child bearing hips" and I come from a family with short legs and big calves. Just to reiterate, I was disappointed that it wasn't a shocking moment where I was like "oh, I actually am small."

But enough about my body. After we did the whole point out what you like/dislike about your body thing, we did some collaging. I'm not sure what exactly I was supposed to do, but when I asked for clarification, she told me to do what I felt inclined to do. Basically I collaged the body with images that I felt represented different parts of my body, or emotions I felt in different parts of my body or in my head things that I thought about a lot.

The themes that came up were anger, death, anxiety, and I can't remember what else. I wish I had taken a picture so I could remember. She asked me about anger and if I feel anger a lot, and I told her I do, towards a lot of people. I feel like I'm filled with anger. I've worked a lot on managing my anger and taming it, and not expressing it physically. But it's still there, and sometimes it manifests itself as hurt, or hate towards myself.

I think next week we're going to do work on anger have, but I'm not really sure what that's going to look like.

1 comment:

  1. Jessica/anewlife123November 11, 2015 at 9:23 PM

    I don't think body tracings are good exercises. I had the same experience as you except I drew my body first and then was traced. My estimation matched my tracing almost perfectly. And of course that pissed me off because it meant I was exactly as 'fat' as I thought I was. It wasn't helpful at all. That said, I hope that even though it wasn't a revelation for you it was helpful in that you recognized that you have a lot of anger. I hope that you can find a healthy way to express it. You don't deserve to take it out on yourself.