I roll out of bed, groaning, and slump into the bathroom.

Standing under the scalding jet of the shower, I breathe in the steam until I'm fully awake.

Toweling off, I walk into my closet and haphazardly choose a mismatched outfit.

I toy with the idea of eating breakfast, but decide that I'm too fat anyway.

I walk into the bathroom again and blowdry my hair. Soon the highlights I painstakingly saved my allowance for begin to show.

Not that anyone notices them.

I apply a bit of concealer to my nose, which is always a bit red, and a few artful strokes of mascara to my upper lashes.

It brings out the green in my eyes.

Running another hand through my hair, I meander into my parents' bathroom to give myself a once-over before I leave for school.

Not bad. Everyhting in place.

I turn to walk out, hearing my dad calling that we're going to be late.

Stepping out of the door, I impulsively turn back towards the mirror.

I keep my eyes on my feet, walking slowly to my reflection.

Really quickly, I jerk my glance up, hoping to capture my appearance as if it were a first impression.

What I see is a too-large nose, a fleshy face, elephantine ears, and fat. So much fat.

My coping mechanism kicks in and I concentrate on my eyes.

I like my eyes.

They're a dreamy hazel. A hint at my personality.

When I try again to take in the rest of my reflection I see only the points that I have designated as positive.

Instead of seeing my blubbery thighs, I see the defined muscles of my calves.

Instead of seeing my chubby fingers, I focus on my slender wrists.

I laugh bitterly. It's not just that I'm fat; it's more that I'm misproportioned.

And I'm not a fat personality.

Fat people are supposed to be nice...easygoing...jovial.

I'm sarcastic, high-strung, and bitter.

The last one could have been avoided.

I used to think that I was beautiful when I was little.

Then I met people outside of my family.

I heard snatches of gossip. I was the "ugly girl" of the class.

No one bothered to learn that I loved to read.

No one ever found out about my warped sense of humor.

No one cared to read the stories I would stay up writing.

No one asked for my opinion.

I was just the ugly girl.


If someone's pretty, people want to find out more about them. They pay attention to the positives and ignore the negatives.

If someone's ugly, people dismiss them as being "a nice person to talk to."

For a while.

The more they learn about the ugly person in question, the more they concentrate on the negatives.

Good looks are like a get-out-of-jail-free card for life.

You could be the meanest, most sadistic bitch out there, but if you're pretty, people use that to cancel out your faults.

Ugly people just fall deeper and deeper into this pit of loathing.

Not just the disgust of others, but the repulsion of ourselves.

They tell us that it's what's on the inside that matters.


They tell that to you with their innocent, surgery-enhanced faces, lying through their bleached teeth.

They don't know what it's like, being someone who's ok on the inside but sucky on the outside.

No one bothers to look inside.

I should overcome it, right?

You're probably thinking I have issues, and that looks *aren't* important, and that I should get on with my life.

Well think on this: Every day, I ask myself why God would make someone ugly. Why can't there just be "average" and "pretty"?

I wouldn't mind being average.

I've begged for beauty so much that it's pathetic.

I want some guy to look at me and think more than "Ewww."

I want someone who can understand, but you don't talk to ugly people about being ugly.

You smile and tell them that they're beautiful.

It's the worst thing to do.

We know we're not beautiful.

And there you are, lying.

And then we never trust people about our appearances again.

We'll be dying on our anorexia death-beds, and with our last breath, we'll ask, "Am I skinny now?" And through your tears, you'll say, "Yes. You are." And we won't believe you.

All because you lied to us before.

Trembling, I turn away from the mirror and see my mom.

"That skirt doesn't match your sweater."

I ignore her.

Doesn't she know that guys don't pay attention to ugly girls?

When they look around, their eyes roll right over us.

I could dress up in a fucking chicken suit, and no one would comment.

There are some people who've told me that I need to take innitiative; if I want a boyfriend, I have to ask a guy to a dance, or tell him I like him.

I hate them even more than the people who tell me I'm beautiful.

I'm fourteen. Do you know how many times I've had my heart broken?


I've reached out to guys seven times.

And every time they spit in my face.

Figuratively. Except once. But I think that might've been an accident.

And it's not like I'm going after the "popular" guys.

My sights are set low.

Really low.

As in, if a bum walked up to me and said "Can I have some change?" I'd tell him, "Yes, but only if you ask me out."

When I meet up with my friends, I note with a pang how beautiful they are.

Maybe they're not; maybe I'm just so used to trying to find some good in my own appearance that I look for the best in everyone's.

That's not a good thing; it just makes me seem uglier if I'm seeing all of these beautiful people.

I wonder why they keep me around.

Michelle has the prettiest face and such thick hair.

Kristen's the prettiest girl in our grade.

Danielle has the best fashion sense.

Grace is bold and you can see it just by looking at her.

The list goes on.

And there I am. Soiling their image.

And they all tell me I'm pretty.

And I want to laugh at them--tell them they're not helping.

Tell them they're making it worse.

And sometimes I cry.

And they don't understand.

How much little things hurt me.

Because I'm so weak behind all this fat.

There's this tiny, tiny thing that's me, and it's just building walls.

It just sits there, replacing bricks.

You see, they're brick walls, and every time someone tries to reach out to me, they take off a brick.

And I want to trust them.

I want them to know me.

But I've spent so much time cancelling out the ugly image with fake me's, that I couldn't stand to truly share myself with someone, and have them walk away thinking, "Oh, so she really is only ugly."


Now not only am I ugly, I'm funny, smart, collected, and ditzy.

Not really. I mean, I really am smart and funny, but not in the ways I make it seem.

I'm smart because I love learning, bot because I'm obligated to be like I make it seem.

I'm funny with a sadistic twist, not just playing-the-fool and laughing at my "naivety" like I make it seem.

I try to make people laugh, because when people laugh, their eyes are closed, and they can't see me.

And I laugh with them.

I laugh at myself.

And for every laugh there're more tears.

And I avoid guys I like now.

I'm afraid that they'll reject me.

And I don't think I can take being hurt again.

I used to be young.

I used to harbor thoughts of fairytales.

I would hit a growth spurt, right?

I would become beautiful.

Then the story changed.

I wouldn't have to become beautiful; Prince Charming wouldn't *care* about looks. He'd only care about that tiny me, and he'd sit there and wait for me to take down each and every brick.

And then I just stopped believing.

Prince Charming doesn't exist.

And then that opinion changed as well.

Prince Charming was for the pretty girls.

And so I finally realize that no one will never know me.

And so I'm telling you now.

Yes. You.

In the hopes that you'll see another ugly girl, and you'll say, "Hey. She could be really awesome."

So here's what I'll tell you:

I love sitting outside on an autumn day and reading.

With no one else.

I don't like people much.

I just want to be alone a lot.

And they don't understand.

I can't get away from them.

I have to see them.

And they have to judge me.

And I hate it.

And I envy them all.

But the thing that I hate the most is that there's still this part of me that's convinced that *someday*, Prince Charming *will* show up and say, "Hello, you have lovely eyes, you know?"