Ayanda Bambiso


December 2013, 39 weeks pregnant

My dearest Body,
I am standing in awe of you how well you function; it goes beyond my understanding how God made you perfectly.
Every organ, vein, vessel, bone, tissue, muscle and cell is working hand in hand to keep alive, to be a perfect temple for my spirit!
And above all the most miraculous phenomenon is that you can even grow another human being inside of me to full completion and perfection.
I am so grateful for you and I try my best to treat you kindly and wisely and above all to listen to your language!
I can feel this beautiful little so precious soul inside me that God has blessed me with and it is moving and speaking to my soul and spirit and feeding of you!
I can feel that you are getting stretched, tired and have aches and pains and forgive me when I worry about you because I think we actually don’t know how strong you are. You are very persevering and a fighter and I am highly grateful for you!

Ayanda Bambiso



Today, I am struggling with my body. I feel so sad and sorry for it. I’m so thin.

This is the second time I have cancer. This time, it has spread from my breasts to pretty much all over. I often wonder why I got it. I thought I was invincible. Maybe it has something to do with losing two loved ones to Cancer within the last two years. Maybe stress is more powerful than we realize.

My body was my temple, my pleasure, a vehicle to house a good life and a celebration of soul. I have loved my body. It allowed me to be passionate, wild and wonderful.

I felt my sexiest when I was 48. I was and still am with the love of my life. It’s hard now to be ill. I miss so much about my body now. I miss “us”.

A thin body is a very tough thing to touch. I am fragile.

So my message is this:

Love your body. Respect your body. Take it to beautiful places. Make peace with the imperfection of it. Stop talking badly about it (your body listens really closely). Eat delicious food with gusto. Dance as much as you can. Get sunlight on your skin. Use it to give and receive love.

Be compassionate towards yourself. Take well earned rests. Nourish it. Live without fear, live in the present and most importantly, let go of meaningless shallow stuff.

There really isn’t a lot of time on earth. We all die in the end.

Ayanda Bambiso


Dear Body

Dear Soul

Dear Heart

Dear Mind

We are connected.

We are balanced.

We are free.

And we are fine.

Ayanda Bambiso


To my dear Body
We have been on a long and windy road together these past 50 years, we have had some good times and bad, some high adventures and low abysses. You have allowed me to go places physically and spiritually that others only dream about.
When we were young, I never doubted you or gave you a second thought - perhaps even took you for granted.. Physically, you were able to do anything (any sport, new task or activity?) You moved with the rhythm of life, following the delights of my mind willingly. I may even have abused your ability to bounce back after a big night, a long ride or trail run), you stayed the same throughout the years - even now after 4 child births, physical and emotional challenges, you not only weigh the same, but can still carry me over mountains, across rivers, through extreme cold, and constant physical adventures that life keeps throwing at us.
After you were so damaged by surgical shock, drug treatment, emotional despair, I thought I would never get you back. For a long time, you were not the warrior you once were, Going under the knife to transform the body I took for granted was the turning point in acceptance of the way we are: I drowned, mourned the loss of the 'perfect' body you always were It left me fragile, insecure. The pride and elegance I felt in who I was before, was shattered overnight. We fell hard together. I believe it was your way of telling me to slow down. I never heard your voice before - saying stop trying so hard, stop trying to be Superwoman, stop trying to achieve the impossible in 2 jobs, 3 small kids and a hectic lifestyle. But I never listened. I thought we were invincible. it was only then that I began to nurture you.
With a broken body, we had to build a new relationship together, we had to face the world with no hair, scars, a changed perception of our sexuality, but I now appreciate how lucky I am to have you and am leaning to accept the way you are with grey streaks, aging skin, and teeth that need attention.
Let us grow old together peacefully and I will try to listen intuitively to you always.
With love
June 2014

Ayanda Bambiso


Hello Beautiful,
Wow! Every morning I wake up and you are rearing to go regardless. Full of energy and never getting tired.
For a long time Anorexia consumed you and in the weakest times you stood strong and fought back.
Never running out of energy and never giving in. The scars are proof of what you have done for me. Often I scolded you and I am sorry. Learning to love and accept you as no one is perfect.
I was amazed at how perfectly you healed 100% once I recovered from an eating disorder and I have never looked back to those dark days.
That chapter is long over and today you allow me to nourish you and love you just like you are.
I love every bump, scar and even my little pot belly.
I love you:
Strong legs that pound the pavements and beach daily in running shoes. You are still skinny but I love you. The muscle show how strong you are.
Strong arms that allow me to play good tennis, do hand stands in the sea and downward dogs in yoga.
My heart that beats and allows me to love unconditionally and to be hurt.
My healthy lungs that breathe fiercely every second.
My brain that helped me to study and qualify this year. You are smart.
My hands that allow me to be creative. Most importantly twiddle my hair.
My whole body that floats so beautifully in the ocean daily.
My beautiful blue eyes that see so well and shed some tears. The window to my soul.
The bits with cellulite than show me I am normal.
You have taught me that I am stronger than I think.
Thank you to my amazing strong body for never giving up.
I am forever grateful for my beautiful body.

Ayanda Bambiso


Hi body,

I love you.

How are you feeling?
It’s been a tough few days, hasn’t it - just anxiety and adrenal gland wise. Your cortisol levels must be a little shot. I’m sorry for all of that. I’m working to make us feel more happy, more often, more consistently.

It’s unusual for me to say this, but these days, I mostly really like the way your outside looks.
Remember a few years back when I hated you so, so much? I’m sorry for abusing you with food at times and abusing you with really horrible, negative thoughts.
I’m so grateful for you. You work so well! You never fail me, unless I’ve already failed you. You tell me what I need to know, loud and clear. I’m finally learning to listen.

If I said I don’t still have moments of feeling real shame, feeling not good enough, I would be hiding the truth. And a lot of that is still about you. I’m sorry. It’s all this shit in my head conducting a useless mess of fear and ambition informed mostly by all the nonsense we’re fed as women, and all the nonsense I’ve allowed myself to be fed since I was first made aware of the power my physicality had in the world. I still think you’re powerful, body, but in a different way.

I’m really strong. And healthy. And I can do just about anything I set my mind to, physically, if I work hard enough. I know how lucky that makes me, how maddeningly rare that is. Thank you for working so damn well. Thank you for your astounding resiliance. Thank you for your loyalty.

Fair warning - I’m going to use you for all you’re worth until the day I die. I mean that in the nicest way possible, and yes I’m speaking of intention rather than fact. I hope to use you for all you’re worth until the day I die. I hope I’ll never be idle. I hope I’ll never give up on choosing health first. I hope I’ll use your ability and your verility towards the goal of helping others.
I hope I’ll take you to a hundred different countries, to taste a hundred different foods and climb a hundred different hills (maybe even some mountains).

We’re in this together, and I’m so gratefully happy about that, at last.
It’s you and me, pal.

Ayanda Bambiso


Dear body

We never know what we have until it's taken away from us. We all go through life thinking it will never happen to us. We treat you with an arrogance believing you will just continue to do your duty. We forget to take a minute and appreciate what a wonderful machine you are. How together we have learnt to change and adapt and move forward. Your adjustments have become so smooth that it's as if it's always been this way.

I want to thank you for telling me when to rest and when to continue. You helped me decide and guided me into a tough decision and you kept me positive and strong throughout. You assisted the talented surgeons who changed my fate into a easier one by keeping your end of the bargain, you listened to the machines and doctors and you allowed them to do the unimaginable because you knew it would help us.

You made me believe we could do anything together and we keep learning and going forward and I look forward to our journey together into the future. I'm excited for our future adventures.

I am sorry I never used you to your full potential. You had strength and ability and I never felt comfortable using you to your full potential. One lesson I would love to teach my children, especially my daughter is to always have a strong body image, to accept your flaws as strengths, to use the magnificent vessel that gives us life to its full potential. Don't shy away from things because of how you may look.

I have one more favour.. Let go.. Please let go of the arm you still feel is present and let it go. We have shown each other we don't need it and we are doing fine without it. We don't need to feel its presence anymore. We have grieved and moved forward.

Thank you and I will love and appreciate you more as we work together.

Ayanda Bambiso


I haven’t always loved you.

As a dancer, I have – at times – hated you; pushed you beyond your capabilities, forced you into positions you just couldn’t manage and loathed you when you couldn’t give me what I wanted. There is no physical art with cleaner lines and greater technical expectations than classical dance. So I learnt to expect perfection of myself and you!

It’s taken years to learn not to want this anymore; to understand that a happy body is one that’s at peace with my mental and emotional space. These days, I simply love your ability to move lyrically – with grace and poise; I love the femininity of your lines; I love that you’ve held a beautiful shape through the years.

Thank you. Thank you for functioning so well; for allowing me to experience such a magical world as dance. Thank you for instilling in me the confidence to do pretty much anythingI might choose to do, physically.

I love you.

Ayanda Bambiso


My dearest body
Today I am writing this letter to you with gratitude in my heart. You are the vessel in which lives my soul. And my heart and soul are beautiful. You have many stories to tell. Some are good, some are sad. I have abused you, hated you, cursed you. Yet through it all, you continue to hold me up and give me life. Today I love you. I feel beautiful. I am beautiful. I thank you for that. My wish for you is that you enjoy many more years with me loving you and feeding you with kindness, love and loyalty.
Yours always
B xx

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