My uncle leans on the door frame of my room, rubbing his distended beer belly like a disdainful mother to be. Congrats, Kiddo. You look good.How'd you drop all your baby fat so quick? How'd you find the willpower?
I lost it quickly by not having any willpower. I don't eat half a piece of cheesecake and stop like those everyday superheros of willpower. I binge on my lightheadedness. I eat up every tick on my secret calendar telling me that I didn't eat. I cut out pictures of magazine models and rip off pieces of them and slowly chew them before spitting them out because I don't know how many calories the ink has.
I just watch why I eat I tell him, and he orders us a pizza.
My tennis coach gives me the once over. Congratulations, Girly. You're looking trim this season. Tennis must have been a good influence. What exercises have you been doing?
I exercise when my parents are at work at my sisters are at ballet. I run up and down the 27 stairs in our house until my lungs are hell and I breathe fire. Every step up is me ascending towards a life of praise, attention from future lovers, and clothes my mom isn't ashamed to buy for me and every step down I feel like I'm going to trip and fall and never stop falling. I don't stop until my daily caloric intake in negative one thousand.
All sorts of exercises I tell her, and she has me run four laps.
My minister greets me after church. It's been so long since she's seen me she says, her plump arms wrapping me in a hug. She smiles. Every widower she's comforted, every child she's fed, every cold geriatric woman's hand she's held in hospice shines though her face and she is truly beautiful. Congratulations on your weight loss, she coos. I could stand to lose some myself. How did you manage it?
I managed by hating God. I hated Him for every Sunday School promise He broke. I hated Him for testing me like this. I hated Him for not carrying me on the beach like the poem on the wall of our living room promised. I managed by curling up on the cement floor of the laundry room and screaming at Him to just kill me already.
Lots of prayer I tell her, and she smiles knowingly.