When my grandma first held me in her arms,
She started to weep
Far from the immaculate picture of perfection she dreamed,
I was tainted by a pink stain.
Wine stain they called it
Maybe that’s why I hate wine.
The doctors promised it would go away
But maybe as a first act of rebellion
It decided to stay.
As it grew alongside me,
Extending to my eye,
My parents took matters into their hands
They took my body into their hands and into the operating room.
Like a cow being branded, 
I cried and screamed and kicked
As I was painfully moulded into a more conventional version of me.
Albeit shrunken,
My stain survived in all its pink glory.
As years passed,
I gradually became accustomed to the questions and remarks:
“Did your boyfriend bite you, babe?” from strange men on the street.
“I think you have lipstick on your cheek.” from old women as they tried to wipe my face 
with their fingers covered in spit.
And the classic “Who beat you up?” which I even got from the police.
What I couldn’t get used to was sticking out.
I wanted to be invisible in order to be safe.
In order to not have my boundaries crossed
And my space invaded
By people I did not know
Did not like
So ten years later I went to the doctor again
This time determined to walk out mundane.
Only my mark would not be erased.
Not after a session, or two or six.
When the doctor gave up,
I finally realised I was relieved.
I had internalised the world’s view on how I should be
Never listening to my own wishes.
The mark is still there
And like all my scars
I wear it with pride, not shame,
A daily reminder of defiance and resilience
In pretty girly pink.