How I wish I could fast forward you to now, 22 years on and help you look back and see how beautiful you are.
I wish I could magic away all the unkind words you mutter at your reflection as you stand in front of the mirror in your room. Replace them with the truth.
I know every night you sob into your pillow, haunted by the picture drawn of you by a classmate, pinned up in the school corridor. A ball with two bunches. Laughing faces crowding around the notice board.
I know you can still hear the taunting poem echoing in your dreams ‘She’s fat, she’s round, she bounces on the ground, her name is Rosie.’
It was prepubescent puppy fat, prior to womanhood. That didn’t matter though, I know. Their words wounded, left their mark, like nails in wood.
But I have something I need to tell you. I need you to listen hard.
Under that baggy jumper you always wear, hiding a body that is too thin right now, a future miracle waits to happen.
I want you to know, that this body of yours, the one you berate, the one you use to control the chaos that is your life right now, this body is going to do something amazing one day.
Your body is going to create three human beings with his eyes and your lips.
Your body will soften and strengthen. You will eat cake, turn your face to the sun and my beautiful, you will TAKE UP SPACE.
Food will nourish your body, it will make you strong, you will come to understand its power to make you thrive. It will become the means by which you nurture friendships and tether family.
Extended family Sunday lunches, Saturday night spaghetti suppers, custard slices and pots of tea, eaten in front of the Eldorado omnibus. Happy memories from your own childhood, reconjured in a mouthful.
Your body and mind will conquer and create so much. Your body only deserves kind and gentle words, my love. Your body will become the vehicle with which you will LIVE life.
Your body will extend three ways, outside of your body and call you mummy. It will cartwheel, climb trees and bump its knees and you will love every inch of it.
It will stop being the tool with which you damage your self-worth.
You will eat the cake.
No longer dying to be invisible.
You take up space.
Stand in it my love, stand in your space.
All my love,
Your future self xx