Mikaya Heart is one of the healthiest, happiest LLLs we know
Mikaya Heart is one of the healthiest, happiest LLLs we know

If any part of your body hurts, love it!

At age 62, Mikaya Heart is one of the healthiest, happiest LLLs we know. See parts one, two, and three for Heart on aging joyfully.

How do you think we can experience aging positively?

The words ‘joy,’ ‘love,’ and ‘creativity’ I use almost synonymously. I’m talking about allowing the energy of the universe to flow through us, and that makes available everything in the universe. When that energy flows through us, we experience it often as creativity – we might experience it sexually, or experience the need to paint, dance, sing or shout or whatever.

What do you recommend to women who are beginning to experience negative effects of aging?

The first thing is, if any part of your body hurts is to pay attention to it and love it. Just love it, and talk to it! Tell it you’re sorry if you’ve pushed it too hard and you’re sorry it hurts and you’d like to help it! Then imagine or remember a time when your knee was great, you could walk up hills, go hiking, and so on, remember what joy that was and think about how incredibly wonderful it’s going to be when you can do that again. And allow the feeling of joy and delight to course through your body, so that you really feel it, so that every cell is filled up with delight at this idea. Let yourself jump for joy, or laugh with delight, or shake and shiver…let that happen! Let it express itself.

What if there’s no “allowing” that? How would you manifest that if it’s not happening?

I would deliberately think of something that brings me joy, and create such a vivid scenario so I’m present in that scenario. But sometimes you can’t get to that place of joy, because there’s some other emotion that needs to be expressed first. There’s a lot of ways to think and talk about this. My new book, Life, Lies, and Sex: A User’s Guide to Being in a Body, has a couple of chapters about how to manifest what you want and why you might not be able to.

Sometimes it’s hard to identify what we want. Our culture tells us we want a nice house, a nice car, and all that, but I’m talking about something much deeper. Those things can be wonderful — I’m not saying they’re bad, but sometimes they don’t bring us the joy we’d reach if we go deeper.

Doesn’t everybody find limitations as they age?

Our culture tells us a lot of stuff that doesn’t have to be true. I’ve spent most of my adult life un-learning most of what I was taught as a child.

For instance, we’re told that men are stronger than women, but I find I often can do things that strong men can’t, just because I know how to use my body right. I’ve always been into what is traditionally men’s work, such as building and mechanics, and I’m just as good at them as most men. I do think that many women don’t know how to use their bodies in the way that men do, and they are not as comfortable in their bodies as men are.

We’re told that your body doesn’t heal so fast as you get older but that’s not my experience at all – I think my body heals faster than it used to. I’ve been told by some medical practitioners that older people don’t need so much protein, but I find I have to eat a lot of protein or I get very tired.

I divorce myself from negative influences. I’m very careful what kind of books I read because so many books are about violence and fear, and I don’t watch TV. My life experience tells me it very often doesn’t have to be the way we’re told it is, and I’m much better off listening to what my own body tells me.