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The Rulers of Themselves

By Swan

Image is of a crown, which is pink with a glitching stylized effect.

My father and I have an interesting relationship, one where many of our interests collide but there is not much overlap. This is ok, we can be two different people and still be a family, but that doesn’t mean I don’t learn much from him. I learned to cook, I learned about music, and I learned about fashion and style.

He defined style as something that you need to develop yourself. Style will always be timeless, meanwhile fashions come and go. I always viewed my dad as stylish, but most importantly fearless. He would walk out of the bedroom and I’d be stunned by massive pants or leather jackets or patterned suits.

In that moment he was powerful and all knowing, even though I was taller. I learned how to rule yourself that day, but I wouldn’t understand it until years later.

My father bought these boots, I thought they were dumb. I wore them and suddenly wanted to wear them all the time. I like to believe he saw something inside that was waiting to bloom. I was in high school and I felt self-conscious wearing shoes that clicked against the floor. People looked at me funny and I remember going back to my sneakers.

I would stare at my boots and wonder if I should wear them, but I didn’t; I was afraid. My dad just said, “Afraid of what?”

Not until I got into creative writing did I really give him a title: The King of Himself. He ruled the way he was perceived; his image was carved into the eyes of others and he just smiled in response. I was jealous of my dad and soon followed suit, beginning the slow conquering of my body, through tattoos, hair and clothes.

When I looked at myself in the mirror, I saw someone who was changing. When I look now, I see someone who has almost conquered every part of themselves.

One day I will raise the flag of victory and I will rule alongside my dad.


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