Note to my Daughter

They told me that every scar on my body

Was just another moment that I survived.

That every stretched valley  was a sign of

The struggles I've overcome.

I didn't believe them until now.

I look down at the pink lines that trace my

Seemingly endless thighs, and realize just what

Those people meant.

One day, as my lover and I lay down,

My daughter will push against me;

Her warmth radiating through blankets and

Soft breathing keeping my heart in time.

She'll notice the scars and ask how they came to be.

I'll stop, and I'll feel the arms embracing me tense,

But I'll know what to say.

I'll tell her that they are old battlewounds 

From the most streneous of wars that lasted

For years upon years.

I'll tell her that sometimes our worst enemy

Is the person inside our head

And the hatred in the mirrors.

I'll tell her that, in my mind,

The police sirens called me to bourbon on the rocks

Until I crashed.

I'll tell her that I had to make a mosaic of all my broken

Shattered pieces. All I was made of was 

Caffeine pills and just a little too much duct tape.

I'll tell her how I couldn't love myself

Even when others said they loved me;

How her father had to soothe my fears and smooth my hair

Before I'd dare look inside my Hell.

I'll tell her I learned that Heaven and Hell are not places

In the afterlife, but what we make of this world for ourselves.

I'll tell her she's beautiful, extraordinary, and a miracle;

That I'll protect her as much and as for long as I can.

I'll tell her my scars are beautiful

Because they taught me how to keep her safe.

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