by Lisa

My life began three months minus a week too early, and the first three pounds of me hasn’t increased in proportion with my height.

My sternum and my ribs make ridges under my skin.  My knuckles punctuate my fingers, obvious in their purpose.  My hips arc shallowly to hold up these jeans that I hate so much.  My spine travels process by process along my back, and my tailbone torments me when I choose the wrong chair.  The current thigh-gap obsession?  Mine at sixteen was about closing it, not maintaining it.

I am skinny.

The comforting padding of pregnancy left sooner than it came.  I LOOKED AMAZING. A picture of my fuller, smiling face hangs on the refrigerator door with so many beautiful photos of the daughter that caused the fat.

Cream in my coffee, butter on my bread, cheese on my burger, chocolate in my face like nobody’s business all make no difference.

I am skinny. That is that.  I look good in vintage, can sometimes buy off-the-rack, and know how to sew things without zippers or darts. I love and accept my coat-hanger physique.

I  buy my clothes at rich-dead-little-old-lady estate sales, but never my shoes unless they come from her little old man’s closet.  Tall women have big feet.  If fur didn’t make me cry, I would have a closet stuffed with deliciously warm wraps and stoles and cloaks and coats, satin-lined and precious. Fur makes me cry, so I spend winter shivering, wishing for spring.

None of this is a complaint, but I’m disturbed because I just read a big trashy magazine spread about EATING DISORDER CONFESSIONS Plus: Scary-Skinny Celebs! and, well, I look like some of them.  The difference is that they run the expensive streets of California in baggy jogging shorts and sweaty tank tops while I pedal as slowly as possible on my Ishtar to get where I’m going.  I conserve every calorie, hoping that it lands on my butt.

When the world runs low on little old ladies with good tailors and gaudy taste and lazy surviving family members, I’m in big trouble.