Had a dream the other night.
I was with this total stranger; a crying woman.
In the dream– she was trying to get to this magical land… a place where she’d find happiness, a job, peace of mind and the tools to undo a life-threatening decision she made.
But when my alarm went off…I realized the dream wasn’t a dream, it was real.
I had been texting with “Mary” (not her real name) before I went to bed. We met as a result of a news story involving illegal butt injections. “Mary” is one of the dozen or so women who have reached out to me since my initial interview aired with another woman on the subject.
Mary is a mom, she’s in a relationship, she has career goals, regular everyday problems and…admittedly– low self esteem.
The latter prompted her to make the dumb and life-threatening decision to allow an unlicensed person to inject a substance (heaven only knows what) into her body…to try to achieve what she calls “that look, that butt like Kim Kardashian and Beyonce.”
I’ve never laid eyes on Mary, but we’re now connected. She texts or calls me every other day. Sometimes I reach out to her. We chat. She cries. I listen and try to encourage her. She regains strength, then loses it again. We discuss her doctors visits, her treatments and how she hates what she’s done.
You see– just one of her side effects… Mary’s rear end periodically gets as hard as a rock because of the toxic, “mystery substance” that was never meant to enter her body.
She makes constant ER visits. She lost her job because it hurts to sit…and because of her absences.
Sure I can tell Mary’s story in a news report. Sadly, though, I can’t fix it.
The journalist in me is intrigued. The woman and mother in me…is emotional.
The Back Story–
Two years ago I started plotting ways to develop a story on the underground world of back-room booty shots. A very reliable source revealed to me there was a person flying into Dallas once a month to perform these injections at a spot somewhere along Harry Hines Blvd.
My source was trying to help get someone to talk about it on-camera. I placed anonymous Craigslist ads hoping to attract someone who’d do an interview… but no takers. Zero.
I forgot about it for a while. Then suddenly…a few weeks ago things became disturbingly real. A Dallas Police Department death investigation brought this seemingly hushed topic to the limelight.
Now I find myself– no longer searching for someone to talk to about it. I’ve got people calling me. Including Mary. My new friend.
The Conclusion, But Not Really–
If there’s anything Mary is teaching me, it’s how important it is to love myself and to teach my daughter and all girls I come in contact with, to love themselves.
In my own opinion… the images, the music lyrics and the “wanna-be like” phenomenon all around us– it can seep in and negatively affect our children’s character, their outlook on the world and their self-esteem.
We’ve got to find ways to limit our exposure to some of the obvious things that promote self-deprecating behavior.
That’s a fact I hope you won’t ignore.
If you do– it could very well prove to be one “big ass” mistake.