Scrappy

Last night
I saw a picture of myself
from about 4 years ago.

“I look so young,”
I thought to myself.

Baby face
less little lines
pre-highlighted hair.

That younger me
she was curious
but not daring.

She was strong
but stagnant.

She held onto things with clenched fists
rather that rolling with what came and went.

In truth, there are pieces of that girl I miss.
That I miss so much.

I miss the security she felt.
The safety.
The simplicity.

But when I catch a glimpse of myself now,
when I see a picture
or look at myself in the mirror
I like what I see.

I like those little lines
around my mouth from smiling,
and in between my eyes
from
fierceness
and drive.

I like the story my face tells.

I like the word “scrappy.”
That a person can takes pieces of heartbreak
and celebration
and road trips
and funerals
and make something twisted and beautiful out if it.
That they can put together a collage of their own creation.

I look different than I did four years ago.
I am a few years older
a few pounds heavier.
I am bolder. 

In these past few years
I traveled to Israel
and Greece.

I moved into a cottage
and then moved again.
I learned I’m a little restless that way.
And I like it.

I lost both of my grandparents
and jumped on a plane
without packing a thing.

I got 2 cavities filled
and drove to Mexico
where I got food poisoning.

I welcomed my baby niece into the world
and went to the laundromat more times than I can count.

I closed my eyes and bought new tires.
I left my first real job
and my first real love.

I ate beignets at 3:00 am with my best friend
and rubbed her back during a funeral.

I danced hard at two different family weddings
and began a master’s program.

I adopted some food rules
and then let them go.

I read a bunch of books including
The Alchemist
and Love Warrior.

I discovered The National.

I began writing again.
Fiction.
Poetry.
Truth.
For the first time in a long time.

These are just some.
Some of the things.
Some of the pieces
of my scrappy collage.

Some pieces are shiny and bright.
Others are dark
and still hurt.
But they are all mine.

I may be less pretty.
Less young.
Less clean.

But I feel much scrappier now.
And I like that just fine.

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