I promise not to be perfect.
Or to be flat.
Or out of reach.
I promise not to look that hot when I kiss
because you probably don’t either.
I promise to be convincing sometimes
and pushed and strained and weird
Because humans do that.
And I’m one of you.
I promise not to be better than you.
I can’t be.
I tell you this now so you won’t be disappointed
when you meet me
and I’m pretty from here
but not pretty from that other side.
I tell you this now so you won’t look for a different girl,
dressed up like me.
So you won’t ask for your money back,
and shake your tickets in the air.
I hope you don’t hate the lumps in my hair
and the slouch in my back when I’m really relaxed,
I can’t run them away.
I want you to know that I want to honor you,
but I get distracted by impressing you instead
because I see movie stars and think they’re beautiful and I forget that its their humanity that’s making me cry, not their collarbones
I’m suspicious that you’re judge and jury,
that this isn’t what you want.
that I’m breaking a promise with my normalness.
I had potential to be huge.
…If just worked a little harder.
I guess I’ll look normal in my wedding dress someday.
Like you probably did.
Maybe that’ll make room for something more beautiful
than flat stomachs.
Something like forgetting yourself.
I promise that I won’t nail every moment.
I promise I’ll be scared it could’ve been better,
I promise that I’ll work really hard,
and I’ll do well sometimes. And maybe not at others.
I promise I’ll hold up a mirror,
and make you uncomfortable
because it’s uncomfortable to know that life won’t lift us up somewhere perfect.
It’s uncomfortable for me,
to discover I’m such a normal girl
instead of a perfect one.
But I think it’s better this way.
I think it makes room for something else
I can promise to be one of you,
I can promise to tell you a story,
I can promise to make new promises.
Like, I promise to have stretch marks,
and I promise to be caught looking strange.
I promise to eat when I’m nervous and stare too long at myself when I’m done,
I promise to wonder if I’m doing it wrong,
I promise to wonder if I’m hot enough for this,
I promise to work too hard because I care too much I’ve always cared too much,
I promise to love every second of this, and be terrified to watch when it’s done,
I promise to hope for the best every time every time every time,
I promise to fail at being better than you.
I promise to fail at being worse.
I promise to let you watch my face, blown up 40x60 and think whatever you want,
I promise I won’t be there to control it,
because that’s the choice I made because I promise there’s a part of me that wants that faith, that wants to believe in the promise that there are more important things for me than to be flawless for you.
I promise not to stop, like you don’t.