For Attractive lips, speak words of kindness. For lovely eyes, seek out the good in people. For a slim figure, share your food with the hungry. For beautiful hair, let a child run their fingers through it once a day. For poise, walk with the knowledge that you never walk alone. People, more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed. Remember, if you ever need a helping hand, you will find one at the end of each of your arms. As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself and the other for helping others
I’m a perfectionist and yet, nothing in me is perfect. I still think the best solution to problems is crying, I still avoid confrontation and I still write my feelings instead of talking about them but I’m getting better and if I can do it, so can you.
And kid, you’ve got to love yourself. You’ve got wake up at four in the morning, brew black coffee, and stare at the birds drowning in the darkness of the dawn. You’ve got to sit next to the man at the train station who’s reading your favorite book and start a conversation. You’ve got to come home after a bad day and burn your skin from a shower. Then you’ve got to wash all your sheets until they smell of lemon detergent you bought for four dollars at the local grocery store. You’ve got to stop taking everything so goddam personally. You are not the moon kissing the black sky. You’ve got to compliment someones crooked brows at an art fair and tell them that their eyes remind you of green swimming pools in mid July. You’ve got to stop letting yourself get upset about things that won’t matter in two years. Sleep in on Saturday mornings and wake yourself up early on Sunday. You’ve got to stop worrying about what you’re going to tell her when she finds out. You’ve got to stop over thinking why he stopped caring about you over six months ago. You’ve got to stop asking everyone for their opinions. Fuck it. Love yourself, kiddo. You’ve got to love yourself.
“My mom doesn’t believe in love. I think she stopped after my dad painted her soft skin with the harsh colors of blue and purple one too many times. Or maybe it was after the nights he came home smelling of cheap perfume she’d never wear. Or no, I bet she stopped when he picked their son as the canvas for his unwarranted anger. Growing up, she’d tell me that she’d pray God would make her heart like stone, like the rocks that the sea beats against over and over; she craved their inability to feel. She claims her prayers were answered, but sometimes, when she sees old couples walking hand in hand still very much in love, she turns to me with a sad smile and reveals that she always thought that’d be her and him and I have to look away. That smile, it’s her achilles heel; it tells of her shattered dreams and whispers softly of her broken heart.
My mom doesn’t believe in love. As soon as I could understand the concept she drilled it into my head that there was no such thing. She thought it was a waste of time, sneered at those who tried to say it was one of the things worth living for. Unnecessary, dangerous was how she described it. She said she’d be damned if I fell into its trap and ruined my life for a boy that would leave me broken.
Now I don’t know how to tell her that I feel the things she warned against. I dont know how to tell her that my heart jumps when I look into his eyes or press my lips to his. I don’t know how to tell her that I fell for a boy with plain brown eyes and a smile that reminds me of the sun. I don’t know how to tell her that I gave him my heart and now he has the power to ruin me.