Today is my last body image class of the semester. It’s also the end of National Poetry Month. At the end of each semester, I begin to panic. Did I teach my students enough? Did I empower them? Can they let go of ridiculous standards and appreciate themselves for the beautiful, amazing people that they already are? As I was thinking about my last words to them, I was reminded of this poem that I wrote when I was in college and feeling protective of my friends (and myself). I thought I’d share it today in honor of my students this semester and National Poetry Month (side note: I noticed that WordPress has skewed the formatting of the poem. So sorry for the harder readability).
Note to Self
Register that it doesn’t matter whether or not you weigh a buck ten whether or not he says “I Love You” whether or not you hear his voice immediately, eventually, or to hell with ever seeing him again. Forget about your dress from three years ago– your finest silver sheath whose straps he fingered lightly on its way off of you– collecting dust, teasing you to squeeze into it for one last fling. Shrug at the last fling you had in it and how you came up for air not from satisfaction but starvation. It ate at your soul– a sickening, shaking, deep hunger– for weeks afterwards though you stuffed yourself with the usual offerings– eyeing the women on Diego Rivera’s canvases each so pure it made you forget that he was a bastard to love– for days in order to purge the experience. Surrender yourself from these games– white flag crisp and clear. Walk away. – rosiemolinary
Now, your turn! When you think about what you wish to remember as absolute about self-acceptance, self-awareness, and body image, what is your Note to Self (it doesn’t have to be written in poem form, but it can be!)?