The Picture (A Romance in 185 Words)

She did not turn to acknowledge that he was about to snap a photo of her, nor did she tilt her head in disapproval. If she turned toward him, he would assume she disapproved and not take the picture. Instead, she walked slowly toward the sunrise-lit curtains. The part of her life controlled by fear or self-doubt would stay behind her, even if she had to choose an “as if” to propel her.

He gifted her the ability to see herself as imperfectly perfect. In her previous life, she would have hidden herself, stepped behind a door, or refused to be in light sufficient to draw attention. Such refusals inevitably lead to apathy, the architect of so much unhappiness.

Today, though, she crawled from the unfamiliar bed and walked toward the balcony. She knew that the light shone around her in a gauzy corona, giving him an unvarnished view of her. Letting the sheet fall away, she turned toward him. She smiled, one born of genuine acceptance.

Instead of snapping another picture, he tossed the camera on the floor. The camera was no longer necessary. Confidence was its own illumination.

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