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When I Dated America by Mila Renee

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Published on Jan 29, 2013

WHEN I DATED AMERICA BY MILA RENEE
Remember that you are beautiful and that beauty radiates from the inside out. Don't let yourself be influenced by the world's idea of beautiful is. Be your own beautiful.

Do you think they'll notice?
Do you think they'll notice how I so carefully excuse myself before it's time to eat?
Or that when I do, before I'm done, I'm out of my seat, on my feet, into the bathroom
Fingers throat deep?
Do you think they'll notice my teeth?
Chipped from accidents bent over pearl white porcelain
I feel like a slave again
Will they notice corroding fingertips wizened by the acid that rips through my esophagus and drips from my bottom lip?
Do you think they'll know I was doing this for you?
The person supposed to be my refuge from this country's microscope scanning me head to toe
Dancing on my self-esteem like dosie-do so I'll dream to look like a video hoe or sell me magazines of girls all skin and bones with their new nose
Your mother should have named you America
Will they know that 2 years, 4 months, 3 weeks, and 5 days brought me to this place?
Where I'd expect a slap in the face before a loving embrace
It's true; you only accept the love you think you should take
So how did I get here?
Maybe it was your constantly reminding me that I was unworthy
Never to deserve the respect and love a young woman should be given
Maybe the media had you brainwashed too, making you believe that beauty meant being pore less, hairless, and flawless
That thighs that rub together, arms that move long after a wave goodbye, and stretch marks
That sprout and take over like kudzu made me ugly, tainted
Your mother should have named you America
But I stayed with you for 2 years, 4 months, 3 weeks and 5 days listening to you justify cheating
That the girls you were smashing should inspire me to get off my lazy ass because
You chased the skirts I "couldn't fit into"
When you said "Fat girlfriends are not something to be proud of." Why did I stay with you?
Why did I try to mold myself after your bullshit ideals?
Maybe because you accept the love you believe you deserve and that ain't supposed to be much
If you've got curves
But there was a moment when you looked at me as if you didn't see a size 12 jean
We were lying on your bed, on the precipice of legs being spread and I thought "He thinks I'm beautiful."
But it was over like THAT
You acknowledged the thighs that rubbed together, arms that moved long after a wave goodbye and stretch marks that sprouted up like kudzu and took over me and told me to leave
That the last 2 years, 4 months, 3 weeks and 5 days were a waste
that before God made me
He had never made a mistake
Your mother should have named you America
And I wonder, do you think I'll ever get your voice out of my head?
The one that plays on cue every time I want to look in a mirror and smile, accept a compliment
Or not feel like shit for a while?
Do you think this will be a vicious cycle of loving a man who puts me down, binging and purging to lose a few pounds, never knowing I'm a queen so I don't wear a crown?
Will be in every chapter in the story of my life?
And if I have a daughter, will she do what I taught her? To love herself and reject America.
To love herself and not be bothered by the little boys named America
That we don't measure beauty with tape around waists, comparing faces, wishing to trade places with the girls on the TV screen
That beauty is measured on the inside where the heart lies
And though you've given me a thousand reasons not to, do you think I'll ever look in a mirror
And love me?
Saying "I know I'm beautiful America, so fuck what you see."
Because I can't do this anymore, not for another 2 years, 4 months, 3 weeks and 5 days
I need to be free so I can speak truth to the youth, that the average U.S. woman is 140 pounds
That the average American woman is 5'4 and weighs 140 pounds
And that whether you weigh more or less than that, you have value
Your color, height, and size does not define you
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so pick yours up and go show America.

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