the art of self love
By Faith Destiny
Discussed: disordered eating, self-harm
This poem follows a girl who, similar to any other teenage girl, has a hard time in her own skin. As she gets older she learns how to navigate being a young adult and finds herself—she overwhelms a callous world with light.
she stared with sullen eyes at the vending machine overflowing with snacks; she already had a bagel today. more food would only make her fatter. she squeezed at her dimensions as she eyed the candy bar like a bittersweet prize resting on a nest of regret. she sulked as the emotions rose in her like vomit. that was what she did when she got home later that day, gripping the toilet bowl as the half-slice of greasy pizza revisited the surface. she had stuck her finger so far down her throat that it felt raw and disgusting. her heart had the potential to do nothing but ache. her muscles ached and groaned as she lay sobbing in her bed begging for a brighter day. her throat was scratchy and begging for water, but she couldn’t bring herself to get up. she sat up on the kitchen counter, pulling at a banana. nothing tasted right. everything tasted like calories, fat and grease. it had been a while since she felt full. the voice message box of the person you are trying to reach is full. please try calling again at a—she ended the call before the automation could finish. the tears cascaded as she called for people who cared less than she thought, hoping their opinion would change if she didn’t feel so large. the whole in her heart gaped as the razor blade sliced against her skin. her heart sank lower and lower past her stomach as the drops of gooey blood left her arms. thick and red. her face was flushed crimson. her brain rattled with rumors that were “true” about her; she had never known these things. she didn’t know people could be so fake. how is it possible to post something to social media and make a fake thing look so real? plastic covered barbies are better than the velmas these days she guessed. instagram was simply more important than real life. what was the meaning of it? she could go on and on with her questions but as she got older and facades faded all she realized was that life was too short to worry about what people said about her body. too short to get caught up in the superficial. she is beautiful. now more than ever. now she knows it, but it is exterior. still shallow. looks are unimportant to her now. appearances fall at her feet. queen. she has a meaning for life. for her life. everyone has a different one. hers is making her mark. sure, their words, bitter and angry had left a couple. but her kindness and art cover the callouses. she is okay with herself, the pain fuels her to enjoy her real a r t.
Faith Destiny is a class of 2020 Girls Write Now mentee based in Brooklyn, NY.