They built her strong

Able lungs
Breathing oxygen in and out
And a voice of capacity
Eyes that could see the good in people
And ears that could not only hear, but listen
A heart of integrity and kindness
And tears of empathetic silk
Her hands held creativity and capability
And her mind grasped wit and curiosity

But they built a girl
With the weight of humanity on her shoulders
In a world where people didn’t care how she was assembled
But what she looked like

They couldn’t see that she

Didn’t choose to be born to
Autistic brother
Protective mother
Family whose veins were stripped of life from chemotherapy

Nor did they assume that she didn’t choose to be brought into this world with the features she was given

Because all her life, she was taught that beauty was on the surface

They based their opinions on the gifts she had received
Not what she had given herself

Throwing their words around like confetti
Never knowing how they cut like knives

Her passions meant aggression
Her opinions meant oppression

All she wanted was for them to open their eyes
And see how beautiful she was

But how could she be

When her loud voice meant she shouldn’t speak
Her silent tears meant that she was weak

Just because her hair didn’t fall like theirs,
shoulders didn’t rest like theirs
meant she wasn’t good enough

Just because her ears didn’t hear like theirs,
eyes couldn’t see like theirs
meant she never could be enough

Thin enough
Pretty enough
Smart enough
Straight enough

how they never cared
if she was strong enough