The body is a holy and wondrous thing. Broken or healthy, it is a miracle. I know this to be true – but my belief is something I’ve cobbled together from books and good teachers – not from first hand experience.
In a few hours I’m boarding a train for San Francisco and will spend the week with fifteen or so other somanauts exploring the body’s inner space with Gil Hedley of the popular Fuzz Speech. Tomorrow we’ll begin with the dermis and superficial fascia.
I will confess to being apprehensive. Even this morning I ran through excuses that would keep me home. For a moment I convinced myself to head for the City, hide in the apartment I’m borrowing from clients, skip the workshop and treat myself to a week of isolation and stillness. A silent retreat. No one would know.
And then I came to my senses. I would know.
Earlier today I wrote this to a friend:
Taking train to City today for cadaver week…to be able at last to see it all in front of me – to cut into it (which still seems to me such a violation)…I may be making too big a deal of this but I feel as though I’m stepping though a portal and will emerge in six days a different woman.
People ask me why I want to do this. Some are incredulous. Those who have worked with the cadaver are excited for me. To answer their question “why?” I tell them about being a kid and flipping through the volume of Encyclopedia Britannia that had the transparencies of the human body. Remember those? You could flip from the circulatory system to the nervous system; you could see all the muscles and count all the bones. I got lost for entire afternoons just looking, looking, looking. I was so curious. I’m still curious.
And curiosity trumps apprehension any day. I’ll see you in a week.