He pointed at Ale and said, "the skinny one."
The world froze for a moment. I'm the fat one. I didn't know how to react. This was a family full of dietitians, all obsessed with being healthy, and there I was, the fat one, just standing there trying to figure out how to react. "HA HA", I laughed a little too loudly. I pulled out my phone, fumbled with it, and put it back in my pocket. The skinny one. The fat one. "I'm sorry, excuse me," I said as I stumbled out of the room and around the corner into the hallway.
I sat on the stairs, breathing deeply and trying desperately not to cry. I just stared at my phone, not knowing what to do or say or where to go. Ale rounded the corner and found me on the stairs, "Are you okay?"
I was clenching my jaw so it wouldn't tremble. "Can we go out onto the porch?" I whispered.
But before we had the chance, Sarah's mom appeared, holding her 9-year-old by the arm. She pulled the three of us into a room and closed the door. "What do you have to say to these girls?" He had nothing to say at all. He didn't lie. He wasn't trying to be rude. She forced an insincere apology out of him while I stood there rubbing my hands together and taking more deep breaths.
Once we were released from the room, I burst onto the porch, Ale close behind me. We sat on the chairs. I covered my face as big rolling tears leaked uncontrollably out of my eyes. I tried so hard to stop them and to breathe normally, but my struggled attempts just made me look even more pathetic. I heard the front door open. I sighed in embarrassment and frustration as I quickly wiped my face the best I could. Sarah's mom came out and tried to comfort me by telling me the story of how she used to be "chubby like me" but now she works out 6 days a week. The whole thing really just made me feel worse. Sarah had plans to go to dinner with Jordyn and Tasya anyway, so I went home and Ale came with me.
We watched silly YouTube videos and talked about boys for a while. Sarah called us when she got home from dinner and invited us back over for a movie night. I didn't really want to face her family again, but I needed to be with my friends, so I walked back over.
The entire afternoon I felt so down on myself, but something changed that evening in the car ride home. Sarah's 17-year-old brother gave us a ride home in his car. And for some reason during those few minutes, I forgot about the day's rotten experience. We saw a bunch of teenage boys hanging out outside, so we rolled the windows down and blasted Taylor Swift's "Fifteen" while
it doesn't matter what size I am.
I can be happy just being myself.
Because there's no other Tessa Hatchett quite like me.
I'm the one ME.