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by AB Content Warning: Eating Disorders

Everyday I wake up at ten in the morning. I watch some videos on the internet and daydream about being someone else, somewhere else. I increase the volume of my phone, so that no one hears me dream. My mother sends me pictures of old me, someone who was lied to. Someone who did not belong. An atrocity for living. I lift myself off the bed and feed the fish. I know I am supposed to give him two flakes, but sometimes I give him three because he always looks hungry. I don’t want him to be deprived, and I don’t want him to die. He is not mine- I am just watching him for someone else. I don’t want my hunger to kill him. It is about 11 now, and I finally go downstairs. I remove more clothes and stare at the mirror- every crease in skin and tug at fat repulses me. I step on the scale and start to regret the small, pleasurable bites I took during the weekend. I put my clothes back on and walk into the kitchen. I always think that I should maybe skip it. I ate last night and I am not hungry. I should eat since I will exercise in an hour and I don’t want my vision to blur again. I take two crackers, two slices of cheese, and two slices of ham. I roll the cheese and ham and slid them on a small plate. I place a cup under the coffee machine and watched it drip the bitter coffee that keeps me conscious. The machine sometimes spills the splendid coffee on the side and I grab a napkin to scrape it up. I grab a large tub of sugar and take the smallest spoon from a drawer. I fill the spoon with sugar and place it in the coffee. I open the fridge with slight reluctance, and saw regular milk. I looked behind it and read its pasted tag. How much damage was I willing to take from this milk. 140 calories per cup. Since I will exercise after, I will have the milk- only half a cup. I ate. Without any pleasure. It is 12 now. I return to my room to watch more videos on my phone. I want my body to take the foods’ damage before I spin it out of my system. It is 1 now. I go downstairs with my waist constrained by a band. I get on the bike, and ride for half an hour. I return upstairs and exercise for another hour. My floorboards drenched with sweat as I struggle to get up. My legs hurt so good. It is 2:30 now. I enter the shower without looking at myself because I will only find disappointment. Sometimes I whisper to myself as if someone was behind me, they love me usually. It is 3 now. I clean up a bit and then watch my sister. It is 6:30 now. My family gulps their food and I watch them in envy. Counting their spoonfuls. Feeling the saliva drain onto their carbs and fatty food. Tasting every tang and spice crunch against their teeth. I take my small plate of meat and lettuce and eat. Filled with displeasure again. I place my plate in the dishwasher. It is 7 now. I watch my sister more. I fall in love with her innocence and content. Her belly jiggles while she runs and her cheeks crease when she smiles, especially when she eats. She loves food, like me, or like I did. It is 9 now. I walk upstairs, sore and tired from the exercising earlier. I sit here and dream again of recognition with a new me. A different me. Maybe I won’t be second. Maybe he will call, text, love me then. It is 10 now. I feed the fish again. He swims up to the tank in the sight of food. I have been depriving him. I give him three flakes because he wants it. It is 10 now. I write this now looking over photos of old me. Bigger me. Uglier me. No one told me I was ugly. Did they feel bad for me? Everyone is waiting for new me to arrive. I am waiting for her too. I hope she is as beautiful as they say she is. I don’t know her, but I hope she lives a long happy life being what everyone wants her to be. It is 12 now. This is my routine, the only thing holding me together. Falling from the routine would break me. I would fall apart. I already am. I am killing myself for someone I have not met and will never really know. Shedding fat like identities. I hope they chose her, finally. Tomorrow, I will wake up at 10 again.

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