Early the other morning as I was stepping into the shower, he came up behind me.
He warmly wrapped his arms around my waist and slowed me to a stop—just us, just still.
See, the shower was already running and the sun was starting to come up through the bathroom window, and I couldn’t help but think, we really don’t have time for this!
But he lingered and leaned in closer, speaking softly in my ear.
“I appreciate your body,” my husband said right then with all sincerity.
I joined in with his wrapping arms, hugging myself as well, and smiled.
Then he simply kissed me on my shoulder and sent me into the shower that was already waiting for me.
I smiled some more but then soon stopped to question his intent.
Well, that was kind of a strange thing to say, wasn’t it? What was he actually trying to communicate, to accomplish, with that one-liner there? I mean, what exactly is it that he appreciates about this body of mine? What specifically was he referring to?
Was it my shapely curves . . . or did he mean those deep stretch marks from several pregnancies?
Was it the softness of my skin . . . or the still very sensitive C-section scar that spans across my belly?
Was it my infamous behind that he appreciated . . . or the extra skin that now hangs tiredly in front?
I thought it over, still in the shower, while looking over this body that he claimed to admire.
But then finally, I smiled some more, realizing that it was exactly all of it.
Indeed, he is both deeply attracted to my body and reverent to every stretch mark that covers it.
He simultaneously enjoys my skin against his and is in awe of the scars it shows him.
He even thinks both, “Dang, girl!” and “My wife is altogether incredible!” in the very same thought.
It is all of it, and he knows it full well, whether I believe him or not. The only way to explain the attraction and the awe is with full-blown appreciation—and halleluiah, he actually verbalized it!?
What my husband said to me is what I think we all long to hear. Really, what we’ve always wanted to hear from the time we are girls, what we hope everyone else will think from the time we are teens, and what we wish we’d have said to our own selves all along.
I appreciate your body.
All of it.
How it looks. Where it’s been. And what it’s accomplished.
It is all seen, all known, and all appreciated.
And wow, do I appreciate having a spouse who loves me enough to say so.
(But if by chance you haven’t heard it, would you please pass on the memo: I appreciate your body.)