i used to feel the walls of my skin crumble,
crackling like colloseums of days past and
the lids below my eyes a rich purple, the
color of a royal kings pelt or fresh blood.
i used to let my veins flow freely through
the opening gates of my flesh and now,
running, flowing like waterfalls of vermillion
down the cream-colored wrists of your
dearest narrator, i feel my skin tighten
with rebirth and pride in my body.
this is worth more than dysmorphia, every
time i'd take that blade to my forearm i
confused relief for happiness, and my
eyes would fixate on my flesh, cold
and unmoving, icy blue emotion runs
through my green-tinted veins, unknowing.
this is not what happiness was.
i needed to find it.
so i put that blade away, i grabbed myself a pen
and marked myself with butterflies up and down
my skin, i finally wanted to feel wanted.
the scars on my wrists only make me smile
because they are healed over, they are of the past,
and no tattoo, piercing, or body modification is
going to compensate for what i used to do to myself.
but here i am, years later and still kicking.
i am willing to cleanse myself of that behavior, i am
myself, i am purified, glorifying every curve and
crevice of my bumpy, lumpy, lovely body, caressing
my torso with the warmth of a blanket, i will
embrace my chunk to erase the memory of the girl
whose disease consumed her body, you couldn't
see a smile behind baggy black sweaters in the
middle of summer, she is now shining, shimmering,
she is willing to wear a tank top in the yellow sun.
i love my body, show my scabbing scars with a
quiet dignity, this is where i was, this is what makes
me who i am, but this is not where i am going,
these blossoming wounds only make me stronger.
i am capable of being my best self, i have made my
life a journey worth travelling for a long time.
i wrap an orange ribbon around the hypothetical
body of the girl i used to be, to pray that she will
get better, mummify her in exactly what makes
her beautiful, to remind her that she did good,
she's steps closer to sanity, to being better.
i tie it like a bow because she is pretty as a
present and i love her, i don't tell her that enough.
i take her and lift her into the air, raise her up
so maybe she can fit her unnaturally high
expectations of herself, honey, it doesn't matter
if you're a size sixteen if you're wearing your
dress to your grave, own your number.
the hair on your arms is just as valid is the
hair on your head, do not hate becoming a woman.
let yourself fly like those butterflies that you
penned on yourself and rise with that ribbon
like a helium oasis, floating everywhere and
nowhere, understand the lights in the sky and
realize how little you know, you still have so
much more to learn, you are unlimited.
i look in the mirror now and remind myself
that i am beautiful, every color of the rainbow
engulfing me, the blackness fading as i
see my own smile and realize,
i did good.