” Oh Owl, I don’t mean to complain but I’m frightened. I’m scared.” Piglet from Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day
The day I turned forty I followed through on a dare
and I went and had my nose pierced.
It hurt alot
and my nose didn’t want to stop bleeding
but I felt bold and strong
because I’d done it.
I went back to the beach house, showered and looked at it in the mirror.
The little diamond stone sparkled and caught the light.
I’d never done anything like it.
The day before the big girls paid for me to have my eyelashes tinted and my eyebrows shaped.
Dave bought me my first ever ‘little black dress’
and I wore it, along with my pierced nose
out to dinner.
I felt really pretty.
I could count on one hand the number of times in my life that I felt pretty.
Regardless of what others say
there is that that little voice inside your head -
that moderator who whispers in your ear.
Most of the time it’s my father.
He tells me I’m ugly and no good and worthless
but that night
it felt like there was someone else
and she said;
‘you look nice’.
It felt really good.
I felt good
but two days later I took the piercing out.
It hurt a little
but if I’m honest
I took it out because the worry about what others would think of me won
over what I thought of me.
I worried about what my Mum would say.
I worried that the doctors wouldn’t take me seriously the next time I had to discuss Ivy issues with them.
I stressed about looking like an older woman trying to look like a younger one :
mutton dressed as lamb
and that others would think the same.
I would never think that of another woman with a nose stud -
I’ve always admired them quietly
but this was me.
I looked in the same mirror at the beach house that I had two nights before
and thought I had no right to something so exotic
and I took it out,
leaving just a bright dot of blood there instead.
The next day I felt angry with myself and sad too.
Why do I always worry about what others think?
Why am I always so afraid to just be me.
Or maybe this is me -
the Piglet in this world.
It’s exhausting always living in fear and I often want to change it
but I can’t seem to let the small frightened animal in me go.
I thought when I turned 30 I would have the confidence to not care what others thought of me
but it didn’t happen
and then, now, I thought that forty would be that time when I could let all of those worries go
but I’m still the same.
Just an older version of who I always was
minus the beautiful diamond stone.