Phenomenal Package

It's important to me that with the limitations and woes of MS, my self esteem and confidence doesn't falter. I wrote this piece as a reminder to myself that I am still 'phenomenal' no matter what and in spite of MS. A Phenomenal Package:

I was the plus sized sister.
I was the plus sized friend.
I was the plus sized cousin.

From a healthy 7 lbs 13 1/2 oz., 20 inch long happy baby, I grew into a well rounded (no pun intended) adolescent. I liked the way my mother combed, styled, and barretted my hair and the clothes that I wore and the shoes Aunt Sarah would get me from Lou's Bootery. And my parents always looked at my sisters and I so proudly. As I grew older and was more independent with personal care, I maintained those standards. I always just knew and felt that I looked great, beautiful even! There exists, however, a handful of times that brought me pause and displaced me unwillingly from my comfort zone.

In my sophomore year in high school, a fellow student that I was 'crushing on' told me, rather matter of fact, that I was "real pretty but big" as his justification to not date me. I still remember to this day every detail (where, who and what) of said conversation. At that time, I would have traded my body for another gladly. But I looked at myself and it was as if my body told me that we're in this thing together.. like a marriage.. for better or for worse.. And though my face, my body looks great, it's what's inside that will last.

As an adult, I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis and the progression over the years has affected, amongst several other physical factors, my walking and gait. This requires the use of a walker and/or wheelchair. I can no longer stand the same nor walk the same. This, too, was a time that I would have gladly traded my body for another. But, again, I looked at myself and it was if my body reminded me that we're in this thing together.. like a marriage.. for better or for worse.. And though my plus sized body still looks great, it's what's inside of it -my heart, mind and soul - that will last.

Fortunately, those and a few other instances merely bruised my ego a bit as opposed to shaking the trajectory of my self confidence. If anything, those experiences only made me mindful to view myself as not a face and a body or rather, a pretty face and a big body, it made me see myself as a package, created phenomenally from the inside out.

The prettiest brown,
The full swell of my breast,
The large shapely legs,
The sway of my hips,
The proportionate curve and design of my body,
The soft, well defined beauty of my womanly shell
A loving heart,
An intelligent mind,
A sweet soul.
'We', as in my body and I, are beautiful.. ‘We’ are a phenomenal package.

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