I didn’t understand it, I didn’t truly see it, until I saw her.
She was taller than me. Her skin was darker than mine. She was bigger than me, probably a few dress sizes larger. But her body shape was the same as mine. And she wore a dress like one I own.
As she danced, her hair out and wild, her body moving with full abandon, I saw it. I saw the thing others have seen in me.
I saw why people find me beautiful.
I was tired. Exhausted really. I’d worked for fourteen hours the day before and only gotten three hours of sleep the night before. I managed a short nap before this particular gig, and I was buoyed with the knowledge that it was to be short.
Except it wasn’t short. The times had been mixed up. This would be a long gig as well.
I felt deflated, almost ready to cry. My only solace at the moment was that my favorite work friend was with me. At least I would have her company as we waited out the party.
Because of circumstance, I found myself near all the action. My moving light board was sandwiched in between the bar and the DJ. I had to be able to see my lights and hear the music as people danced.
The crowd was slow to pour in, slow to get themselves out onto the dance floor. I stood by my board and began ticking off the minutes til we could pack up and leave. But then a small crowd formed, and she was among them.
As I watched her move, watched her let her body go to the rhythm and be fully herself in the moment, I remembered times past where I felt that. A smile plastered across my face that hurt from its intensity. A rush of endorphins as every nerve on my skin tingled. Glee in the moment, the hot lust in my body, the abandon of just being me.
Logically I know I’m beautiful. Logically I know I’m attractive. I’ve fucked enough people who I find to be utterly gorgeous to know I stand among them, at the their level. But I don’t always feel beautiful. I don’t always feel sexy, hot. I don’t always know why people want to be with me.
But, standing there behind my light board, watching her dance, I saw in her what others had seen in me, a reflection of my true beauty as another reveled in her own.
I ended up dancing alongside my coworker as we enjoyed the DJ’s skills and fed off the energy of the crowd. What I thought was going to be a horrible evening turned into one of my most enjoyable gigs ever.
And I learned a valuable lesson that night: To be one’s self, wholly and completely, without reservation or hesitation; that is beautiful.
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