Every morning, I dread the alarm that reminds me I’m alive. Morning. The room is lit up from the small window behind my bed but it still feels too dark. Just as I fall back asleep, my alarm goes off a second time. The cool air stings my skin as I crawl out from underneath the warmth of blankets. Stretch. Yawn. Morning. My eyelids are heavy. My heart is heavier. ‘Mirror mirror on the wall, who’s the fairest of them all?’ With a small sigh, I mutter “not me.”
For years, my reflection hasn’t been what I have wanted it to be. Anorexia and depression have taken a toll on my body. Their lies are intoxicating. Demanding. Constant. My eyes have grown dim as life has drained out of my blood. Here’s to hoping a little makeup will hide my pain.
I get in my car and leave my safe haven behind.
Yet as I pull up to work, a sense of peace lifts my heart. I shift my gaze from the ground to the walls. Walls covered in individual expressions of life. Stories fall from the colours. Engraved into their fabrics are the souls of their creators. Each brush stroke carefully planned out. You can’t escape the beauty but why would you want to?
I sit at the desk observing the life that bustles around me. Each individual has a story. Each has a purpose. Each are a masterpiece.
I look down at my arms and see scars that never seem to fade. If I am a masterpiece, are these some of the brush strokes that make up my very being? If you gently graze your hand along my broken skin, can you read my story like Braille? Where I see flaws, others see hope. Where I see failure, others see courage.
If I am a masterpiece, am I beautiful despite all that has gone before me?
I am the painting on the wall. I am art. Nothing can convince me otherwise. Not even the demeaning lies of anorexia and depression.
This is my story. I am a masterpiece.