Hey Lou Writes

The Grey Matters

You Don’t Have A Soul: Read On


Day 4 of the blogging this month caught me off guard.

You see, I’ve been adding a link to my post from 2013 for each blog so far. This is to point out (and to remind myself) just how much life can change in two short years. I’m writing from a completely different perspective and from a completely different place, both physically and emotionally.

The thing about today’s prompt:

Favorite quote (from a person, from a book, etc) and why you love it

is that looking back to two years ago, I still love the same quotes. What I thought when I was 23, in this regard, is almost exactly what I’d write about today.

I’d add another two runner ups:

“I am a lone reed.”


“It’s only weird if you make it weird.”

……..and then I’d replace the WINNER from 2013:

Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two makes four. -Winston in 1984, George Orwell

with this:

“You don’t have a soul. You are a soul and you have a body.” -C.S. Lewis 

Alright. The day I heard this, my life was changed forever. (Changed in a good way, since I was 23.) It served as a reminder that we are all walking around in bodies that we didn’t choose. Sometimes I poke my skin and think, “Wow, this is me. This is weird. I didn’t choose what I’d look like. I will never actually see myself (mirrors and photos aside). And who am I? I’m this weird soul/personality inside this body.”

It made me see everyone a bit differently. We all know that looks fade and all that hoopla, but on the day I heard this quote, I thought about what that meant. I looked at everyone walking past me on the street that day with a sort of compassion; that they have a story I know nothing about… that they, like me, didn’t choose what skin to wear… and that we are all as helpless in changing the body we came in… it made me feel that as a human, I’m in this together with everyone. All these people who are souls walking around in bodies.

Kind of like Shallow Hal…. what would the world look like if we were just souls running about our business? Bodies add a serious amount of drama to our lives. They are how we feel- but what if our souls have those same sensations? What if it’s really the SOUL that makes up what science has given a name to? The ability to feel both tangible things and emotion in our hearts (souls).

There are days when I’ll light up a cigarette to accompany my whiskey and I’ll think welp…. this is just a strange body. This moment probably won’t matter.

There are days when I wake up to go on a run, eat only organic food, drink plenty of water, go to sleep early and think welp… it’s the only one I’ve got! Better treat it right.

I’d like to think I have a healthy balance of these two realities and that the second one happens much more frequently. I’d also like to talk about a pressing issue in today’s society:


You see, there was a time (I’ve written about before!) when my body image was … on a scale of 1-10… a -5. Negative. Five. This is crazy. It’s crazy for anyone to feel this way. I wasn’t in my right mind and it took some serious work to change that perspective I had on myself.

Hearing this C.S. Lewis quote was one of those things that served to help me with my own body image. I learned that really, I had to start to love my soul’s image and what my soul believed…. I had to learn who I was.

Then…. dun dun dun… a friend asked me to be in her photo shoot. A nude photo shoot. It was like the biggest test. My first instinct deep inside was “Why me?” The second instinct I had, as a gut reaction, was, “I HAVE TO DO THIS.” I respect Kate Burn as a photography and love her as a friend. And this photo shoot changed my life for the better.

Kate Burn Photography

A few months later, a second photographer friend (JAK : another Albuquerque photography team doing great work!) asked me to participate in a breast cancer awareness calendar…. another instance in which I’d be photographed completely nude. This time, though, I was going to be painted. Talk about a cool experience. Talk about being a little nervous. But I did it! I did it right alongside a bunch of other strong women who should love their bodies. Because I think these photos say a lot about the soul, too.

my heart was pounding!

my heart was pounding!

I’ve done a lot of soul searching here in this new place. I’ve been in Wisconsin now for two months (just shy of a few days!) and I’ve had ups and downs. I’ve already made mistakes. I’ve already become stronger.

I’ve made up my mind on a few life choices and I’ve come to terms with

A) My body

B) My mistakes/choices

C) My soul

I think these three points cover most of it. My soul is who I am. I’m starting to really like who I am. And about those damn mistakes… well… I am laying in some of the beds I’ve made, but I’m also learning valuable lessons. I’m learning that my body is capable of hard work; this is something I already knew, but I forget often. I doubt I’ll forget it this time.

I hope you all feel at home in your bodies. I hope you have a chance, like I’ve had, to feel lovely and confident and to learn that your soul is who you truly are. Bodies are weird. Life is absurd. 

And things seems to be mostly okay. { :) }

Just sayin hi to someone special

Just sayin hi to someone special

Love, Lou (who usually has clothes on)

Author: Melinda Haas

Melinda is a writer, blogger, artist and teacher. She lives in Wisconsin with her family.

2 thoughts on “You Don’t Have A Soul: Read On

  1. Pingback: Dobby and the Sock I Didn’t Have | Hey Lou Writes

  2. Pingback: You Don’t Have A Soul (Part 2) | Hey Lou Writes

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