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FUN A DAY #25: Em

[CW: parent death, resulting loss of appetite/weight loss, drinking, mention of statutory rape] // Boys liked to get melodramatic and tell her stupid shit like, “You’re not like other gir more...

[CW: parent death, resulting loss of appetite/weight loss, drinking, mention of statutory rape]
Boys liked to get melodramatic and tell her stupid shit like, “You’re not like other girls…” because she was that type, or seemed like that, apparently. It never felt like a compliment, because it never was, and it definitely didn’t mean that a boy actually liked her. All it really seemed to mean was that the boy talking to her hadn’t really figured anything out about her, but still liked how she looked, and was too embarrassed to admit that that was the only real reason he was interested in fvcking her. There’d been one boy, in high school, that had told her, “You’re different because you’re pretty and smart.” She didn’t really think of herself as ‘pretty’ (…did anyone?), thought she knew she wasn’t not pretty. She looked a lot like her mom, she had the same pale skin, straight brown hair, big forehead, and almost too small nose. She didn’t really think of herself as smart, either. She was just overly sensitive, and frankly more attentive than she wanted to be to everyone’s behavior.
The truth was that she was exactly like other girls, she just had less interesting clothes, and a very particular record collection. And the record collection wasn’t really even hers, she’d inherited it from her mom. After her mother died, Em had moved the records into her bedroom, and sat and listened to each one of them, sometimes she’d listen to two in one night, or sometimes she’d listen to the same one over and over until her father told her that it was after one in the morning and that she needed to go to bed. Her hair, that everyone thought was so beautiful, got long, she hadn’t cut it since her mother’s funeral, which had been a few years ago. She lost weight, went from being thin to being really skinny, because she couldn’t taste anything anymore, and she never seemed to be hungry, anyway. Her mom had literally wasted away to nothing, and while quietly Em worried that she might do the same, people insisted on telling her that she looked great.
She dealt with it, or tried to deal with it, by hiding in baggy, nondescript jeans and tee shirts, drinking, and forcing herself to socialize with the very few people she did like, which mostly meant guys that talked to her but that hadn’t hit on her, and didn’t seem like they planned to, and the very few girls who talked to her, and who didn’t make her feel weirdly nervous, or seem put off by her. It was weird, being around people didn’t seem as torturous as it had when she was a kid, she became slightly more extroverted after the funeral. She tried to listen, and she tried to be sympathetic, which the nerdy guys at her job seemed to appreciate. They also seemed to enjoy her deadpan sense of humor, and they didn’t try to read too much into it. They just laughed with her, which felt good.
She didn’t party or drink or smoke all that heavily, or alone, though she wanted to, because they distracted her from her seemingly endless feelings about her parents and her stepmother. But the most effective distraction was sex, which was why she secretly slept with a married coworker who was ten years older than her even though she didn’t really trust him. She’d started sleeping with him shortly before her eighteenth birthday, even though she knew it was an objectively terrible idea (really, after everything that had happened with her mom and her dad and his affair and remarriage, statutory rape just didn’t seem like that big of a deal), because she wasn’t really herself with him, and she needed a break from being herself. It was almost embarrassing, how much of a relief it was to be with him, especially considering that she was still slightly wary of him.
She went home every night though, and slept in her old bedroom. She still dreamed about her mother most nights, and she regularly woke up at 3 or 4 in the morning, with this phantom feeling that her mother would be there if she got up and went into her parents’ bedroom. Sometimes she would wake up and feel like she could hear her mom walking around downstairs, and she would lie there in the dark and listen to it, as if there were some chance that it actually was her mother, and try to fall asleep again thinking that she was there, or at least sort of feeling like that. She didn’t believe in ghosts or their ability to haunt places, or in most things that she couldn’t see for herself. She just knew now that thinking that you had a ghost was easier than admitting that you were bereaved, and that you were still just really fvcked up from whatever horrible thing had happened to you.
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8 tracks
  • 26min
  • 35
  • One year ago