Mirror, Mirror

Mirror, Mirror on the wall. Am I pretty or am I not?

You stared at me for a while, tracing your face. I know what you’re thinking. Quite chubby on the cheeks, your chin not a desirable one. Dark circles under your eyes tell you that you haven’t been sleeping  a lot. You can conceal that. You’re thankful for the light in my eyes, though. At least that’s good. You smoothed out your T-shirt today. It’s boring really, just T-shirt and jeans. But it’s comfortable enough for you. You spun left and right. Well, you think your stomach could use a little toning down. You feel fat. You hate yourself for not being able to lose some weight. And those chubby legs. You looked at them spitefully. You looked up and down and put on your best smile yet.

Darling, you are beautiful.

***

Mirror, Mirror on the wall. Am I pretty or am I not?

You stared at me again. I could sense the urgency in your eyes. You looked at your face and I could see your lips twitching in displeasure. No, don’t think that way. You managed a smile, trying to convince yourself that you’re pretty, but those sad eyes don’t lie. You looked down to your stomach, down to your legs and then up again to see tears have streamed down your face.

I could read your mind, haven’t I told you that? I could see that someone has told you that you’re not good enough. I could see his voice echo through your mind. I could see the million reasons you started to form in your head to support him. I could see how much his opinion meant for you. I could see all those things.

Your knees gave way and you leaned towards me, gasping and crying and looking at me every few seconds to say that you’re fine. My dear, I wish I could reach out and say that you’re amazing and you shouldn’t care what others say. But I’m confined here while your head started running wild and telling you that you’re pathetic. More tears came along.

Darling, you are beautiful.

***

Mirror, Mirror on the wall. Am I pretty or am I not?

You observed me carefully. But it felt more like I was observing you. I was taking in the girl I saw. She can’t be you, there’s no way that it’s you. She’s too skinny, she’s too pale. She’s a living skeleton. She’s just skin and bones. She can’t be you.

But it was you.

You were observing yourself, tilting your head from side to side. The dress that suited you back in the old days now looked rag. What happened to you? It was clear in your eyes, the weak smile. What did he say that you decided it best to become less than dead? Why are you doing this to yourself?

You shook your head. Not enough, is that what you’re thinking? Being skin and bones with hollow cheekbone and blank eyes isn’t enough? I know what you’re thinking. No dinner tonight, there’s no need for that. You want to look pretty, you want to look nice. You want people to say that you’re gorgeous. If I could slap you awake from all these thoughts that this is the way to do it, I would. 

Darling, you are beautiful.

***

Mirror, Mirror on the wall. Am I pretty or am I not?

You were skinnier than ever. Your eyes were as hollow as they could ever be. You were trembling from head to toe. But here you are, standing in front of me. You touched your hipbone and your collar bones. Were they always this horribly vivid? Your clothes were wearing you down. I could clearly count some of your ribs. 

You frowned. This wasn’t enough for you. You shook your head and you started to cry. You looked at me. With one motion, there was a swig of your fist and I felt something broke within me. My vision was shattered and blurred. But I could see you knelt on the ground, crying yourself off. You broke me, but I couldn’t care less. It was half an hour or one? I never knew the time. But you tried to get up. You were off-balance. You leaned towards me for support. You took deep breaths and tried to walk. 

A few steps and you fell.

I saw some extra light shed on the floor. I saw footsteps. I saw someone kneeling beside you. I saw them dialing someone – a hospital perhaps. I saw them cry. I saw them in their despair. More footsteps. They put something over your mouth, to give you some air, perhaps. I saw them heave you on a stretcher. I saw them carrying you out. 

I didn’t see you for a while. Are you OK? Please come back soon. I would like to tell you something.

Darling, you are beautiful. Just the way you are. Don’t sacrifice your own happiness for people who will never love you for who you are. Darling, you are beautiful. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

***

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