I Pull Out A Red Sequin Dress From The Back Of My Closet And Weep

I Pull Out A Red Sequin Dress From The Back Of My Closet And Weep

Maybe one day I’ll look at my body in the mirror and not see a cutting board. I’ll wake up in a world where I’m not a voyeur to my own blood. I won’t fall asleep with an old rusty little sharp thing next to me in my nightstand.

It’s just a reminder. At least, that’s what I tell myself.

The itch never really goes away. It’s a hunger. Like Princess Aurora, it is dormant. But today, there’s rain in my bedroom and each drop falls on me like a thousand little kisses from a prince’s lips.

Today, It’s alive like Lazarus.

It growls when I want to remember I exist. It forms a hollow in my stomach when I want to forget I’m here.

Time heals all wounds, they say, but the left side of my pelvis flashes white against an olive sky with the lot of them.

I stand before the reflection in my vanity and want to set fire to the landscape between the miles of skin that have spread from hip to hip. I hate myself for the way I cringe. The way I look at my large breasts and feel trapped. How I look at the way they sit on my chest and imagine that like me, they droop from shame. How I sometimes dream of excavating the muscle and fat from them. I turn around and look back at the cellulite behind my thighs. I spend long, tiresome minutes rubbing almond oil and using a natural-bristle brush to massage the flecks I find when I squeeze. I move on to the tiny stretch marks that threaten to show. I grasp the folds of my skin until it hurts, my mind drifting to a taut little stomach, tiny little arms, a back less soft.

I preach self-love, but some days I am rabid with self-loathing. For the dark thing I carry on the inside. For the flesh I wear on the outside.

I believe each body is beautiful, just not this one.

I could look into the eyes of every woman I come across, tell her she’s beautiful and wholeheartedly mean it, but there’s days I do not believe it of the woman in the mirror staring back at me.

I am a feminist. I believe in body positivity.

I am looking in the mirror at a hypocrite.

I pull out a red sequin dress from the back of my closet and weep.

I mourn the body who fit into it four years ago.

I mourn the body in the pictures inside the frames on my dresser from seven years ago. From nine. From ten. From twelve. From thirteen.

I want to throw myself with this one into the pyre.

I want to burn every place he ever touched. I want to fill with smoke every cavity left by each thief who stole. I want to erase the fingerprints of every man who couldn’t see me. I want to eradicate from existence every hand I should have never let on me.

I want to hurt for the all literal and metaphorical ways I ever put cold metal to skin.

As I stare at my reflection, I hear my mother’s voice telling me to be mindful of the weight. I hear him telling me I can lose it if I really work for it.

I want to break a lifetime’s habit of making myself smaller, reaching out with hands cupped, hoping for love.

Hoping to be enough.

I want to repent before this mirror for punishing this body and calling it comfort.

I dream of not shying away when a man calls me beautiful. I dream of believing in the sincerity painted across a pair of eyes when they praise me. The way I’ll let myself unfurl like a lily beneath their gaze.

I’ve never bloomed like that before. I’ve only ever been petals crushed between fingers of hands who could only love me when there was a lot less of me to touch.

I dream of hearing someone say they love me and my first thought not being “why?”

I dream of running my hands splayed over every inch of my curves and loving myself for what I do and don’t have, and for exactly who I am.

I pull out a red sequin dress from the back of my closet and weep.

I weep because I’ve been so unkind to this body and the girl who lives inside it.

I weep for letting every lie ever told to me cloud my vision.

I weep for the daughter I haven’t had. I weep imagining she, too, will grow to feel like this.

I push the tears from my face with the back of my hands. I stand straight.

I’m looking in the mirror. I’m reaching deep within myself and it is painful. I want to find my beauty. I want to believe in it.

I want to be able to teach someone else to see theirs when they look in the mirror.

I am trying. But today I look and I can only feel hunger.

I will look again tomorrow. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

About the author

writer on the storm.

Follow Natalia on Instagram or read more articles from Natalia on Thought Catalog. Learn more about Thought Catalog and our writers on our about page.