Thursday, September 9, 2010


Ramona is bulimic, and her therapist wants her to start each day with a positive affirmation, but it doesn’t work out that way.

Ramona:  I stare at myself in the mirror.  Actually, it’s more of a glare.  I’m supposed to look into my eyes and tell myself, “I’m pretty enough, I’m thin enough, I’m good enough, I am enough!”
     Instead, I say, “I’m fat.  I’m ugly.  No one will ever love me!” 
     I mean, fuck therapy.  Anyway, it’s true.  I see myself in the mirror, and I am fat, I am ugly.  I’m not enough for anyone to love me.  
     My reflection stares hard back at me.  I’m so crazy, I’m having a staring contest with myself, seeing who will blink first, LOL. 
     Blink.  Blink, blink.  My eyelids start moving fast, as if they’re holding back tears, only they’re not because I would never cry in front of anyone, even myself in the mirror.  I try never to cry at all, because what’s the point?  No one cares.
     “No one cares about me.  Mom would rather sit at her laptop writing than hear me talk.  What I say isn’t important.”
     I sigh.  Theresa, my therapist, would say that I’m holding on to a resentment against my Mom, but I’m like, for what?  For ignoring me?  I have a right to be angry.  I want to be angry.
     It’s not just that my Mom doesn’t have time to read the poem I wrote her, like happened last night. 
     It’s that I remember, the last time I cried, she said, “Ramona, I can’t understand you when you’re crying!  Go to your room until you can be calm enough to talk to me coherently.”
     Well, I went to my room, and I wrote in my journal, wrote how much I hate him, I hate my stepfather, Cody --
I hate him hate him hate him hate him hate him
     Then I scribbled in my sketchpad, a picture of how I was feeling, black lines without direction, over and over, a black hole of graphite expanding and then PWOOF, it dragged me in, and I did stop crying.  I got all calm.  I went downstairs, and I said, “Mom, can we talk now?” and I was gonna tell her the truth about Cody, and she was gonna take me into her arms like she used to when I fell on my rollerskates and my knee was bleeding, or that time I took the wrong bus after school and got lost and was all the way in New Haven and –
     “Sweetie, I’m trying to make dinner now.  This isn’t a good time.”
     “Mom!  It has to be now!”
     “Cody will be home soon and you have homework, and I have to get this chicken in a pan.”  My mother squinted at an open copy of The Joy of Cooking.  She glanced at me.  She sighed.  “Please, Ramona, I’m busy.”
     “Ramona!  I said not now!”
     Now, looking into the mirror, I say, “I’m thin enough for Cody.  I’m pretty enough for Cody.”
     But he’s ruined me for anyone else. 
     Even for myself.

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