Dysmorphia

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Progress

Florence looked down at the scale four months later and smiled, she was definitely making progress, she looked at her food diary today she had managed to only eat 25g of blueberries and of course drink plenty of water, her stomach didn’t even growl anymore.

Everything was going well, she could feel herself growing more and more willowy, stronger, better, improved and most importantly no longer applicable to the category that she’d been placed in. She saw the glances the other students shot at her, they looked admiring, they looked like they wanted to say something to her but never did and she smiled at the expression on their faces. There had been no more FBPG jokes thrown her way and if she could just lose a few more pesky pounds she would be on her way to being a new and improved Florence.

Clarice had invited her to a party but she had declined, a party meant too much temptation all those snacks, all those fizzy drinks and of course any party Clarice went to would have a steady supply of alcohol.

Though they had now been ‘friends’ for months Florence didn’t really know what to make of Clarice, she was a relaxed type of friend and the friendship they had was nothing like the one she had shared with Cooper, Madison and Lauren. Clarice didn’t really ask personal questions, she just talked about random topics never anything too ‘deep’ as she liked to put it.

She felt like they weren’t really friends, they were just with each other because they had to be, not because they particularly shared the same interests or had enlightening conversations.

Her mother was so preoccupied with running the Diner that Florence hardly ever saw her anymore which suited her just fine because she didn’t want any prying questions. Her father had returned from his trip only to leave again, to go to California this time for a classification project, which she also didn’t mind, it meant the house was mostly hers with to do as she pleased.

She began her morning as usual with her crunches pushing herself harder than she ever had before spurred on by the cheery voice of the Youtube Fitness Instructor then moved on to jumping jacks.

She had lost around thirteen pounds since she had started her exercise and diet regime, she didn’t want to lose to much, just enough to make her no longer recognisable as the girl who had run down a corridor, her arms flailing. That particular video had received over ten thousand views on Facebook.

That day something strange happened at school, she was waiting in the bathroom for Clarice to join her when Cooper entered holding her maroon lipstick, she stopped staring at her awkwardly, Florence was frozen, she didn’t know how to react they hadn’t been in such close proximity since her former friends had ditched her.

“Florence” she flinched at hearing the familiar sound of her name on her friends lips.

“What?” she replied trying to fake boredom.

“I just wanted to say that I’m sorry”

She hadn’t been expecting that.

“I’m sorry we dumped you Florence, it was a horrible thing to do, if I could take it all back I would do it in a second”

Florence felt anger stirring in her stomach.

“Good for you Cooper, you can resume you’re perfect life now, you’re conscience clear now that you’ve apologised to your fat old friend, give Madison and Lauren my regards won’t you?”

Cooper was biting her lip, it was what she always did before she began to cry, Florence hated that she knew that about her, she hated that they had this shared history, she wanted to cut off all ties to this girl who was an epitome of everything she wasn’t.

She felt envious looking at Cooper now with her beautiful with its perfect proportions, the dip at her waist and her thin and graceful legs.

“I know you hate me Florence, I hate me too but I’m seriously worried about you, your so thin now, you look like you’d snap if someone shook you hard. Whatever you think your doing, you need to stop right now, it’s out of control.”

Though she knew she shouldn’t she felt triumph, she wasn’t the fat girl anymore, just a few more pounds and she’d be on her way to a perfect body, and Cooper recognising that made her feel glad.

“Don’t act like your worried about me Cooper” she scoffed “You treated me like trash even when we were friends, you were always the prettiest, always the skinniest, her Royal Highness Queen Cooper Silverstone”

Cooper’s carefully applied eyeliner would smudge if she didn’t stop crying soon.

“Don’t you get it Florence?” she said

“I was always jealous of you from the very beginning, you were always the prettiest, you might not have been the skinniest but you were certainly the most beautiful I half-expected you to be named the prettiest, so yes I put you down. I treated you badly because pretty is the only thing I’ve ever been, you were funny and pretty, people were naturally drawn to you and had this personality that I’ve never had.”

Florence had never been so surprised in her entire life, she had always worshipped Cooper.

“But look what your doing to yourself Florence!” Cooper turned her round to face the mirror, the mirror she’d been avoiding for weeks and Florence’s limbs were so limp with shock she couldn’t resist.

For a second she saw a hollow skeleton of a girl, a girl who looked like she had not only been starved of love, but starved of food, but then the image switched to a pudgy girl, to the FBPG.

“Your ill Florence, you need help” Cooper pleaded.

“I’m not ill” she shouted back “You don’t get the right to tell me anything anymore Cooper”

“You are ill” Cooper repeated “I think you have anorexia Florence, you need to tell someone, you need to go to the hospital”

Anorexia.

Was Cooper stupid?

“Fat people don’t get anorexia” she replied.

“And I’m the fattest of them all Cooper, I’m the fat but pretty girl remember?”

There were black streaks all over Cooper’s face now.

“Please Florence, I am begging you, get help”

“And I’m telling you that I am fine, yes I’ve lost weight but not alot” she replied

“Do you think if you keep repeating that lie over and over you’ll believe it?” replied Cooper.

“Get out” hissed Florence “Walk out of my life just like you did last time”

She shoved Cooper towards the door.

“Go!” she shouted.

And Cooper did.

Five minutes later, Clarice arrived.

“Everything okay?” she asked like she didn’t really care about the answer either way.

“I’m fine” said Florence firmly

“I’m absolutely fine”

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