Marianne stumbled on a root protruding from the sweltering sidewalk, nearly losing a scoop of orange sherbet in the process. Relieved, she paused to lick creamy rivulets from the sides of her softening cone. It tasted like summer, like granny wasn’t sick, like no one would call her names on Monday.
She imagined Maxwell Detweiler looming and poking at her–as he had three days in a row–and how it would feel to shove her sticky treat into his stupid face. But no, that wasn’t right. She’d spent two dollars and seventy-nine cents, which was more than he deserved.
The scars are real; they still partly define me, highlighting my insecurities and self-doubt. Yet, when I think back on my darkest of dark ages, I can see that my childhood was not simply good vs. evil.
The ones who bullied me have scars of their own, perhaps still buried deep in their closets with self-loathing and abuse.
And just because I was frequently the target does not mean I was beyond reproach.
With great shame I recall hiding in the backseat, tying my shoes for an eternity, so no one would know I had arrived with the fat girl.