Every evening I conduct a similar routine.
I come up to my room lay in bed with my extra large heating pad, watching as many episodes of NCIS to become a real Naval Crime Investigator, as possible.
Then, I take a break and take a shower.
I take all of my clothes off and, on a good night, put them in my dirty-laundry basket.
And then I stare at my body.
It's not an awful body. I've definitely seen worse at Night Trips, or on PornHub, yet I have, also, seen better.
I have a proportional body.
If my boobs were any bigger, I wouldn't complain, but I would say I wouldn't be as proportionate.
I have a "athletic" body type.
I had to work to get it there, so I wouldn't be considered fat-skinny anymore.
It's a real thing. Fat-skinny. It's when you aren't exactly skinny, but too small to call "fat".
It's a weird awkward stage one gets in when they are on the verge of being "unhealthily" large.
I look at every part of my naked body. The way you study your notes before your mid-term, going over it with a fine-tooth comb.
I have for years, like most girl, tried to come to terms that this is what I have to work with.
I am short, 5'3, which I actually like, shorter than most guys, which weirdly I have something against dating guys shorter than me, it just doesn't do anything for me.
My skin is flawed but, in a way that I can cover if I feel the need.
I have scarring all over from an accident when I was 10.
I fell face-first off a see-saw, while camping in Switzerland, 5 feet in the air and a boulder caught my fall.
I wish I made that up.
My hair grows in thick which at a young age caused me to shave my arms from the bullying of being called "gorilla arms". It doesn't grow back thick, yet I will shave them until the end of time to never have to hear that again.
My muscles have been improving in my legs but, every time I shave my legs I get razor burn. My legs get so irritated that I try and wait to put lotion on to some how hide it, but it always seems to show. I have tried everything from waiting to shave them, to conditioner, to switching to every type of razor. I have yet to figure out how but like all things in life, it's a process.
My body is covered in tattoos to try and distract from my imperfection. And even I get distracted by them sometimes, so they must help.
My neck is long, my mother use to tell me it was like a dancers neck, which helped me with thinking it was weird for my figure.
My stomach will never be flat due to my love of beer, and soda. But the Abs have been trying to come through. I just have to give up the things I love most like: Red Candy. Red Velvet Cake. Cream Cheese. I can't do it.
I am so distracted by my stomach, as I stare at myself complete exposed.
Each and every scar tells a story; the same story.
I know it's still healing. But I can't help but stare at this 3 inch line, surrounded by a rainbow of bruising; the swelling, and protruding lump of stitch, is anything but sexy.
It mocks me as I stare at it. Reminding me of what is gone, and what I am left with.
I get in the shower and use my Irish Spring: Signature for Men, Cool Spring.
I have always found that men's body wash smells the best, after as a child using all of my fathers Oak, body wash by Bath and Body Works, when he was deployed.
It, also helps as a good cover up from seeing multiple men at the same time.
That last parts a joke. I can't even see one person right now, let alone multiple. Let's be real. But, you are welcome for the future cover up, my lady friends.
I get out of the shower and look at myself one more time.
It always looks a little better wet and bright red, from the scolding showers I take. And , also, with my head tilted, and one eye closed, like I am trying to drunk text.
I need to give this more time, but I can't help but think of how far I have tried to come and that this is what I have to show.
My rawest form makes me cry.
I feel for the most part I have been so strong about all of this dealing with everything.
And I have never 100% felt comfortable in my own skin.
But my self-esteem and self-confidence has never been to this level. Even when I have been turned down, after asking a guy out, this is a new low.
I joke about everything all the time. It really does make things easier, less real, less dramatic, and emotional. I hate being upset. And I hate worrying about shit I can't control, so why not make light of it and move on.
But deep down, I am heart-broken.
It might have been easier to loose a finger.
Yet, I think I'd miss my finger too.