Liar. Liar.

If there is one thing our parents raised us to be, it’s honest people. Growing up, we were given the space and the freedom to make our own mistakes with the expectation that no matter the grandeur of our follies, we would clean up our messes with a little grace, and a lot of truth. Liars were not welcome at our kitchen table.

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Therapy.

The journey to her couch took six weeks of suffering before I arrived. I claimed one corner and pulled my knees to my chest, effectively shrinking myself to a pathetic dot. I assumed that if the world intended to swallow me, I’d go down easier that way. I held my feet for comfort, then glanced at my savior with total desperation—I wanted her to save me.

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Comfortable.

I pulled my favorite scarf—a black and brown pashmina—from its hook, and draped it on my crown. With the tips of my fingers, I nervously swirled the soft fabric around my face, carefully weaving each fold beneath my chin and around my shoulders. My mane escaped in protest, but I was thankful for its coverage, if only to hide the unease I’d created for myself.

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Naked.

At twenty, I modeled nude. My mom called mid-shoot to threaten the photographer, a close friend, with ruthless castration in the event he got fresh. My dad nodded politely at the news as he delicately fingered the invisible shotgun resting in his palms. But joking aside, my experience was wildly exhilarating and wholly empowering; an opportunity to capture a state of being not typically observed and a testament to my monumental self-confidence.

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