I have always been a fan of alien movies.
Extraterrestrial life finding its way to our world and fucking everyone's shit up. Perhaps it was shaddenfrued or an adolescent angst fantasy but my favorite movie were the bleak and somewhat hopeless ones where the good guys got their shit completely wrecked.
Karma has always had a funny way of punishing me for my thoughts.
So as I sat in the glaring white room, sterile and stoic I could not help but be reminded of those visceral scenes of abduction and experimentation on the unfortunate bastards sucked up by the invading forces.
My body had been hijacked years before. Nine years old puberty hit me like a brick wrapped in estrogen. I grew small breasts and hair in the usual places.
My mother and the weird animation narrated by orphan Annie told me I was becoming a woman. My classmates joined me slowly, walking into the race we had begun together. .it didn't take me long to realize I was falling behind.
They grew thin and curved, bodies smoothing into the shapes of our mothers and older sisters. I grew fat and bearded. Faster they ran ahead of me, beauty coming to them like air cokes to lungs, unthought of, unburdened.
I wheezed and choked on the taint that began to grow on my body.
Shaving my chin twice a day before I even reached preteen. The razor biting into a confidence I had not even had time to develop.
I was ugly by the time I was ten.
Six years later, my body was still not mine, hidden away under rbaggy shirts and long jeans. Sweatpants and short hair. If I was going to be ugly then I was going to be the fucking ugliest I could.
A prisoner in flesh that I wanted to peel off and step out of, the ugly duckling of the stories you were never told. I had not gone past the first blossom of womanhood, the flowers of my classmates expanding outward into the fullness of the summer of our lives. Mine simply wilted and began to gray.
It was called PCOS. Polycystic Ovarian syndrome.
A name for the symbiote that had stole my beauty. Seven years, a dozen doctor's and many false diagnoses before I could name the creature attached to me. A parasite moving through my system to destroy and rend.
It meant a lifetime of long or non existent periods, infertility and the five o clock shadow. Cancers and pain.
Gravity surrounded me and pulled me down into a pit where I spent far too many years curled at the bottom of. Scared and alone, broken mirrors and hateful men.
I let them take from me when I had nothing to give, let them use me because I did not realize I had worth.
I have always loved alien movies.
Insurmountable odds and an enemy we are woefully unprepared for. In those movies the heroes do not win when they defeat the monsters, or gain the upper hand. No.They win when they realize that there is worth even in the ugly.
That the deepest pits can be climbed even if you have to drag yourself broken and bleeding through the mud to do it. That beauty is more than a pretty face or a good body. More than the touches of pretty boys or the appreciation of strangers. It's the beauty of standing when the world wants you to fall, of using the mud under your feet to build something from the nothing you were given.
I am no beauty still.
But I am funny, kind and smart. My family loves me no matter how I look.
I have known the love of a good man, I have friends who do not see the ugly girl trying desperately to hide in her own skin. They see the loud, slightly deranged but joyous woman I have become despite the chemicals in my body that tried to deny me it.
I see me.
And I am beautiful.