Today I will forget the way my body looks in a mirror, through a camera lens, or on a palm-sized screen. I won’t be measured by the light in the background, the contrast, the tint, or the shade. My self-love will not be determined by the caption of my photographs, by the clicks of buttons, or by fingers pressed to a keyboard.
Today I will not rely on what I see plastered to a billboard to tell me I’m beautiful. I will not compare the contours of my face to those in a magazine, or brush my fingers over each of my blemishes, as if to wipe them away.
I will no longer hide behind a layer of red lipstick, a smile, a shadowed curtain of hair. Today I will not try to be anything other than imperfect, nothing less than a mess of skin and cuts and bruises and tired lines under my eyes.
I will no longer wear the clothing I’m supposed to, fold my hands neatly in my lap, or bite back the words I want to say that are stinging on my tongue.
I won’t lie about my feelings, but let them rest openly on my face, bold and unafraid. I will acknowledge the parts of me that aren’t flawless, that aren’t lovely, that aren’t put together, that aren’t toeing the line. And I’ll say f*ck that damn line. Today I will be myself.