When I was a little girl, the skin on my shoulders and chest was very white and delicate, almost transparent. My veins stood out like turquoise ropes, and that embarrassed me. I told my dad about how I felt, and I think I may have cried a little.
He sat me on his lap and held me in his arms, and I was a tiny pearl, safe in her oyster.
“You are beautiful,” he said. “You have an especially big heart, and your veins draw a map to it, so that everyone will know how perfect you are.”
I pictured tiny people in miniature trucks, pulled over on dusty roads, consulting the little, squiggly blue lines on their creased road maps, trying to figure the most direct way to get to my heart and see my goodness. My dad always loved a good road trip, and I liked to stay up late while my mom and sister slept in the back seat, to help him navigate and listen to Radio Mystery Theater.
Good answer, Dad.