I’m fearless and flawless.
And sometimes, at these dreamy times, I am not an eighteen-year-old prom junkie standing in the middle of my floor, facing my mirror, and whispering to the butter-fairies in my stomach to buzz someplace else. I am not spending thirty agonizing minutes shaping one frizzed curl with half a bottle of Green Tea Styling Gel or obsessing over which shade of plum lip gloss best accents my eyes. I am not, as my ex-boyfriend used to say, “acting like a girl.”
Instead, I am already twirling on the dance floor, my auburn-fried hair bouncing with charming confidence as I transcend all muddied doubts of myself. I am effortlessly and naturally beautiful. I am—“Don’t forget to pluck the hair from between your eyebrows,” my mom’s brassy voice of reality plummets me back to my Mary-Kay dungeon of anxiety.
“Mom, pl-ea-se stop. I do not need you telling me what to do.” I innocently crank up the volume two notches on my stereo in hope that River Cuomo’s electric guitar can silence her motherly concerns and rattle away my “I don’t want to go anymores.” While the beat vibrates and I lather my legs with freshly scented cucumber lotion, I begin to sway with forced excitement. “I’m going to have fun tonight,” I tell my stuffed dog, Douglass. But his vacant eyes seem as convinced as my crackling voice. However, when I slip into my olive ch...
... middle of paper ...
...sure melting, it’s my Cinderella fantasy that dissolves.
In this moment, as the sun bounces like a fireball off our windshield and crackles against headlights, the air dissociates into molecules of barely breathable oxygen. In this moment, I may not be hip. In the moments to come, darkness may envelop our forms and my moss eye-shadow and “Barely There” foundation may fade like lifeless clowns booed out of the circus ring. In the moments to come, I may not dance like Janet Jackson.
No, in this moment, I am still an eighteen-year-old prom junkie. Although my glittering fantasies of popularity and beauty may sometimes threaten my happiness, I know who I am. I do not need to prove myself with a cigarette, a rowdy mouth, or a provocative dance. And when the dandelions become a golden blur in my window, I feel their secret whisper through my soul. I am beautiful.
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