“write down something you love about yourself”

by Jessica Zhang

A simple task greeted with blank stares. Uncomfortable grimaces mingled with almost apologetic sighs. We all easily dish out fruitful flattery to one another – but when it comes to ourselves the plate seems to have been scraped clean.

In a culture that serves cocktails of praised models that represent one-size-for-all concocted with “all bodies are beautiful,” it’s difficult not to become intoxicated with self-deprecation, drunk on comparison. Perhaps, we’d rather see everything through a tipsy lens because we cannot bear to see ourselves sober.

You see, I was once told to “accept the things I cannot change and change the things I cannot accept,” so if my body is not a permanent concrete structure why would I not try to alter it? My body is an altar where sacrifices are willingly made in order to fulfill the worship of an image society has deemed to be godly. If my body is a temple, media has defaced it with laid commandments I feel obligated to follow. It is the feeling of an idol placed in a sacred place that mirrors the presence of such an intruder who makes themselves comfortable in my own bathroom mirror.

You see, we have become the generation obsessed with exchanging sanity for vanity; enthralled with the art of being both the sculptor and the sculpted in some sickening showcase in which one neither appears to be the master or the masterpiece when the curtain finally falls.

As starving artists, we convince ourselves the cause we suffer for will turn us into something worthy of being placed on a pedestal, as if we were never fed enough bullshit already.


Banner Image Courtesy of The Wanderer Online Visual Editor Gracie Safranovich


  1. A beautiful piece of work.

  2. This is FANTASTIC and really resonates with me. What a talented writer with an honest way with words, wow! thank you.

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