Stephanie Bennett-Henry: I will glorify the shit out of my body.

My body is beautiful, but it has taken me a lifetime to notice. It has housed many things before and I have crumbled into pieces that were nothing more than a locked door of shame. My body has known the receiving end of someone else’s anger, been a punching bag of silence that knew nothing more than the art of becoming frozen from fear. My body has been rendered powerless by monsters who swallowed “No” like pieces of candy that tasted like yes. My body has contorted to society’s norm, starving to be worth something, counting bones to matter, binging on reasons, purging up tables of plates that stayed empty even when I was full. My body has met hearts disguised as soul mates, who tasted the full course of me for days before deciding I was never worth their time. My body has known the darkness of giving up, searching for the quickest way out, where the sharp of the razor checks my veins for the color blue only to spill red. My body has known wars, where secrets fight inside, hoping to be the skeleton that gets to pack its bones, step out of the closet and stand under the spotlight. My body has known all of these things enough to memorize the trauma, break into survival mode, and build itself into a home where I would find comfort in the prison of being my own worst enemy. It’s lonely there. It’s hell in there. Hard to break out of there. But you have to. You have to completely shatter, bust open every wall that still hangs, rip away every lesson that tried to define you, and die a little inside. Then come to life. Birth a new version that swallows the mold of every person you were never supposed to be and spits trauma into flames that even hell is afraid to ever touch again. Then take the ashes, love, smeared hard into every wound, and turn each one into a Phoenix that never stops rising to say, my body is beautiful and I will glorify the shit out of it.
No one’s hands can ever make you feel worthless again. Not even your own. In all your imperfections, is where the beauty caught fire, burned down the shame, and showed you the light that cannot ever burn out. I see your heart in your eyes, like galaxies of everything beautiful. I follow it. It always leads me to the Phoenix and she burns so perfectly beautiful, with my name in her mouth, and shame sifting through her hands like ashes that don’t remember ever bleeding out from wounds you had to swallow to get where you are now. Look at us now. Rising, falling, flying, with scars on our backs, steel in our spines, and hearts that had to break for a lifetime to learn how to survive without apologizing. There’s a roar in the back of my throat that’s never sorry when it screams for you and screams for me: “I will glorify the FUCK out of my body” and the universe holds us now like the best kept secret on how to be so fucking beautiful, the stars fall to wish on us.

-Stephanie Bennett-Henry

#100DayPrompt #TGP100DayChallenge #TheGingerPost

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