I've been on a crash-course identity crisis since I was a kid, imagining I wasn't who I was. I've always been Birdy, the little girl with scratched up elbows and too-big glasses, thin little limbs and flyaway hair disciplined by my mother into a proper ponytail each morning. My clothes have always been plain and childish, and my features never matured. I still have freckles and birthmarks and bitten-off fingernails. My oversized comic books have now grown into an ugly secondhand laptop, but I'm never going to be much else other than the shy lil' thing, so awkward, but by god, she could rule something someday.
Despite all of these things working against me, I want to model. Do something other than the stage crew vo-tech courses and the lighting booths I was pushed into in highschool because I didn't shine with the beauty queens. I would love to see myself covered in glitter, slathered in glamor. I want to be Extraordinary. I want to see myself in magazines. And furthermore, I want to do it as Birdy, skinny body, glasses and all.
My mother says I can do it. I'm her girl. She's the one who started calling me Birdy, her flyaway joy. She dusted the sand from my back when the children shoved me in the dirt. She taped endless Top Model reruns and Miss Universe shows for the late nights I spent awake, self doubt catapulting me from bed. She believes in me so much I think it pains her. As awkward as it is to admit that yes, my mother thinks I'm special, it gives me hope. She says that the stars say this is my destiny. She claims that she sees a world spinning inside of me.
I am Birdy. That is all. That is everything.