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Portland Grace Mar 2015
For my mother,
who told me when I was 4 and didn't know better
that I was beautiful,
and when I believed her.

She told me,
"You know,
women pay hundreds of dollars
for that strawberry blonde color
that you already have."

And I looked in the mirror,
and I believed it.

When I was
12 years old,
and angry at my reflection,
for not being
thinner and fuller,
for my skin not being clearer
and my hair not being longer.
and my mother telling me
that I was beautiful,
but I didn't believe her.

When I was 16
and crying,
because my there would never be
a gap between my thighs,
or a perfect curl
in my hair.

And my mother wiped my mascara stains
off my face
and told me
I was beautiful.

And I told her she was lying.

My mother,
who is beautiful.
Who gave me honey hair
and almond eyes.
Who gave me a garden of freckles,
and the softest skin.
How could I look at my mother,
and say I was not beautiful.

For my mother,
my grandmother,
my sister,
my cousins ,
my brother,
and everyone else in my blood,
who ever felt like they weren't beautiful,
I will tell myself that I am.

I am 19,
and I am so far from home,
that when I look in these different mirrors,
and I feel lost and scared,
and I feel like I am not beautiful,
I look to my mother,
my gorgeous mother,
who will tell me
I am beautiful.

And I finally believe her.

I am learning to love myself,
to love the skin I am in,
it is my home,
and I will not destroy
what my mother built me.

I wake up
and I look in the mirror,
and my mother doesn't even have to tell me
I am beautiful.
And so are you.

— The End —