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Three White Dresses

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The first white dress was gender neutral and sewn to put on a clean and untouched baby. The white was crisp and new just like me, my eyes, my mind. I had not seen pain or felt it, not the real kind. Not the kind that matters. They dipped me and my perfect white dress in water and smiled, thinking that they saved me.

I wore the second white dress in the same building with the same stained glass windows. We rehearsed our lines after soccer practice on Wednesday nights. They gave us each a candle to carry on a Sunday as a symbol of something. A boy pretended to light my hair on fire. We giggled and took pictures and they were sure, then, that they had saved us all.

The third white dress happened more than ten years later. I had cut my hair and there was one month of high school left and I wore it to a ceremony in the cafeteria. I tied a green ribbon around the middle. I was still pure in a lot of boring ways but by then I had felt so much, touched the world in light and dark places and felt it flow through me.




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