This Is Me
July 3rd, 2017
I’m going to be thirty four years old tomorrow…
I’m overweight, my jet black hair is housing some new strands of silver and gray, and my face is starting to show its age. What I thought were freckles are surely age spots and I’m covered from head to toe with wobbly and squishy bits. For the first time in my life I’m on anti-depressants and if I cough or sneeze too hard I pee a little. My breast have been frequented like a 24/7 diner, open for business on Sunday’s and all national holidays for the last year and a half. Oy! My poor, over-worked, surprisingly once perky breast are just so sad. They have a mind of their own now as they sway and sag from here to there, to everywhere.
I’m not really sure what thirty four is supposed to look like, but for me, this is it. I’m a mother first, a wife, a daughter, a sister, a co-worker and a friend. I’ve gone through some of the hardest days of my life this year and somehow I’ve been fortunate enough to find a partner who adores and protects me from myself. I’ve mothered a daughter who tests my patience and amazes me every day. I have a job that allows me to provide for my family in a way I never thought possible. I’m a part of a family that is filled with history, passion, love and support, and I have the most thoughtful and caring friends that have stood by me through thick and thin. This is it; me at thirty four. Typically around my birthday I get consumed in thoughts of negativity. I agonize over things I don’t have or goals I have not yet accomplished. Not this year. I’ve reached a point in my life where I’m tired of feeling insecure about my body’s imperfections and exhausted the feelings of guilt over things I haven’t done. My entire life I’ve been the only person standing in my way, and I’m done holding myself back.
This year, I will work on me and I will fight the demons and thoughts that aim to ruin me. I will ignore society’s perception of beauty and motherhood and define them on my own terms. Ignoring the critics, the judgmental looks and negative energy. I’m taking back ownership of my mind, body and soul and vow to never give up on myself again. I’m embracing my flaws and wearing my crazy on my sleeve for everyone to see and I will start to love the woman I’ve become. I’ve wasted so much time being unhappy, feeling ashamed, and not loving myself for everything that I am and everything that I’m not and it must end today. I refuse to let my daughter grow up with a mother who lets society dictate how she views herself. I will no longer hide behind a scarf, a pillow, a jacket and fear. I will no longer censor my thoughts and my body to comfort your ideas of what a woman should look like. This summer, I’m going to wear the tank-top, I’m putting on those shorts, and I’ll be in that bathing suit. I will let myself be free, beautiful and sexy; I’m officially out of hiding. I will embrace my shape, my curves, my stretch marks, my scars. I will smile when I see my naked reflection in the mirror knowing that I created and nourished a life from this body. My body.
My mind, body and soul are my canvas, my story, my book. My pages are now open and my hand holds the pen. I will never write myself in the dark again.
Happy Birthday Melvi.