When I was only 14, a boy at school called me “flat” for the first time. And continued to until I was 18.
At the time, training bras were donned by the early bloomers, the feminine, the blessed. And I was told by one boy, then herds of them, that lacking something meant it was acceptable to rob me of my self-worth, my girlhood. I wore bras that fit too tight and sometimes ones that left gaping holes right above my heart. From what I can recall, I wished for nothing but a nice set of ta-tas for birthdays and New Years. As if this time around a miracle would set the playing field right.
At 16 I shed my layers for the first time, palms pressed tightly over my chest in fear of undoing the façade I had constructed. I made excuses for myself and for my body until I wholeheartedly believed the words of a sad boy lost in a world of insecurity.
It took me years, cut into tiny fragments of minutes, to embrace my own magnificence. The parts given to me by starbursts and moonlight.
I am now 23 and my partner in life reminds me everyday of the beauty living between the arms that embrace him and the soul that caresses other divine beings. I work hard to equate my body type to no-one’s but the curvature of the galaxy. I count my blessings and peer behind to see the path forged through sullen ground.
But every now and again, on days that are hard, I whisper to my younger self:
“your magic has been within you all along.”