I wonder if you know what it’s like to be loved by you. I wonder if you know what it’s like to meet you, someone who makes you want to be a part of something so much greater. You owe yourself the love you give other people.
Goddess girl, you are the smell of cinnamon on Sunday mornings, you’re my favorite small town, you are sunlight cutting through shadows like spokes of amber—slowly, suddenly, entirely.
Sweet child of the universe, please take care of yourself. You are everything to someone else. You are everything to yourself, and that alone is enough. Make a promise to love and nurture yourself. Not tomorrow, not “when I…” or “if I…” but right now, little dove. As you are.
Because you exist. Because you are a home to a life. Because your body is your flower garden, and you must tend to it with care. Your body is the vessel for your radiant soul. It is your place, the one constant and unfailing supporter of all the things that you are.
It is your duty to look after it, unconditionally, for its squishes, its rolls, its bumps and lumps, for its muscular, smooth, and soft places and the places where it’s not. Because I am yours, and you are mine.
Your body is a work of art, a living piece of history, a breathing canvas that I love for its presence, not for its lacking. Love me in abundance, beautiful girl. Your body may not be small enough for this world, but the world needs more of you, anyway.
Sometimes at night, I put my palm over the center of your chest. I feel myself catching the hems of sleep and I fight it because there’s so much I want to learn about you. I want to know how you feel about balance, about give and take, and if you’ll ever understand it. I want to understand your measurements of hope. I want to know more about forgiveness.
More than anything, I want to you to uncollect every time you’ve felt like it was better to stay small. I don’t like to hear you talk about these things because it’s always easy to commit to the dark of yourself. Darling, there’s nothing gleaming in the damage. I’d rather talk about you. About the way the dimples in your cheeks can make my heart double dutch. About the way your smile looks like a line of spellbinding sun-worshippers. I’d rather talk about how your eyes make me feel like I am suspended in space, with thousands of stars pulsating a thousand different truths.
There are fractures in everything, and for a long time, they will haunt you. For years you’ll try not to touch them, but baby girl, this is how we let the light in.
More than anything, I want to rearrange what you know about softness.
Sweet pea, sometimes you still have the nightmares and often, you’ll still hear the voices, but I’ll hold your hand, and together, we’ll howl. Together, we’ll cry. Together, we’ll laugh. And laugh. And laugh. Because this…this is how we make the darkness tremble.
Starlight, let me rewrite your history, let me brand your skin with new truths. Let me be your new voice, so that the sound your heart makes when it beats is, “build, build, build.”
You are enough.