My Body, My Choice

Dear God,

I haven’t been talking to you much.
I’m sorry I haven’t been in touch.
I lost my faith for a long while.
I lost myself, too.
I forgot I was your perfect creation.
I forgot the privilege it is to be female.
I forgot I was able to create life, to make another human.
Wow, what a miracle and awesome gift you gave this body of mine.
I did not love her with all my power and weight and conviction.
I did not honor her the way she deserved.
Her beauty was lost under the pummeling fists of an angry man.
An ugly man who would break her lip, her spirit, and her desire to celebrate all things feminine.
She would learn to cower, to hide and to hate all men, abused and terrified.
Years would pass, while her self- loathing, and self-worth only intensified.
Defeated, she still slept in his bed, crying herself to sleep after every violation.
Why, God, why me?
Asks another girl in another town, in some other awful, God-forsaken grotesque situation.
She was late.
Oh dear God, no, no, no.
Her period did not come.
She prayed and begged mercy.
Unsure she could carry this child born of hate, from a monster.
She was conflicted and terrified.
She prayed on her knees, begging and bartering.
She made a promise.
She and I, we promised together and our strength amplified.
God, if you make me bleed, I will leave this vicious cycle of damnation.
She woke, undies stained red and smiled through tears for the first time.
There would be no more rape, no more abuse, no more night terrors.
She was lucky and packed her bags good riddance.
We made a divine pact that day, to lean into femininity, and beauty and the body beautiful.
She would honor all her sisters faced with hard choices.
They were solely her choices, and solely mine, not his to carry.
Because only another woman truly understands the right to bear children, or not.
And only she gets to decide.


Photo Credit: hillels Flickr via Compfight cc

Jacqueline Cioffa

A retired, international model, and celebrity makeup artist. Co-Author of Model Citi Zen, the guide. Founder of Author of numerous prose pieces in various literary magazines. Most recently published in Little Episodes Brainstorms the anthology, among esteemed artists Sadie Frost, Melvin Burgess and Todd Swift.

  1. Avatar

    I think art is the ability to physically and emotionally affect an audience a reader a listener – if someone runs up the aisle during a play and literally throws up – then turns and says – this’s a great play!

    What just happened on stage seeped into my pours — it made me sick.

    That’s a perfect moment.

    And BTW – that actually happened.

    So I’m glad that I had visceral reactions throughout your piece — because those are real moments.

    Thank you.

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    It’s glowingly disruptive ….

    The power. The compulsion to become whole is unrelenting. Reading each line each word then being thrown – physically thrown into the next word the next succession of thoughts.

    I wrote glowingly disruptive at the top because It forced me – as uncomfortable as the moment was – to turn everything inward … to understand even the simplest description.

    And that’s the beauty of it ….

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