I smiled to myself. "Just one more term and I'll finally be in my last year of college. Of course I'm ready."
I could feel her current smile grow wider. "That's good. How's the apartment? You doing okay with your roommates?"
"Yeah, we all finished settling in this past weekend," I answered. "I'll send pictures of the apartment once I get back from my classes. Oh and Hayley told me to say hi to you for her next time I spoke with you." Hayley was one of my roommates that I met my freshman year at orientation. We were both majoring in Computer Science and were placed together in a group. We exchanged numbers that same day and kept in touch ever since.
Hayley is one of those people that loves learning new things. She never stuck to one thing, she couldn't or else she'd bore herself; hence her many talents. She even searched it up; multipotentialite, someone with many different interests, talents, and pursuits in life.
It's no wonder why she switched between many majors. She went from Computer Science to Art, then Biology, Criminal Justice, and finally Digital Media; all within our freshman year.
"Give her a hug for me, will you?" My mother asked. "Haven't seen her since thanksgiving break last year."
"I will. She also wanted me to tell you that she might be able to come by again during thanksgiving; she just has to work some things out."
"That's alright. What time does your first class start?" She asked.
"At ten thirty." I pulled my phone away from my ear and checked the time before adding on. "So in an hour."
"Okay well then I should let you go. You know I'm proud of you right?"
At that moment, I heard my father's voice in the background. I wasn't able to understand what he said but my mother spoke again. "And your dad hopes you know he's proud of you too."
"I know mom. Tell dad I know."
I was thankful for the kind of parents I had. Although I didn't say it much, I did my best to show them that I was. "I love you... both you and dad."
"We love you too baby."
Once again, I heard my father's voice in the background followed by the sound of movement. My mother had handed him the phone and upon doing so my father called out to me.
"Hey dad. How are you?" I asked.
Last semester my father had a colostomy just before Thanksgiving. It was a miracle that the doctors were able to detect the cancer before it did more damage than it had already done; since then my father had to use a colostomy bag. It wasn't easy for any of us at first, especially him. Even now he still has moments where, although he might not show it, I know he feels uncomfortable and even embarrassed because of it.
"I'm good. Your mother made cherry pie earlier-"
"Which he ate it all!" I heard my mother yell.
My father and I both let out a small laugh. "Says the one that made it just for me," my father said to her.
My smile grew, "too bad I wasn't there to help make it."
"Aw no worries. However, I do need you to worry about school."
He chuckled, "I know baby. I know your mother told you already but I'm so proud of you."
"Thanks dad." There was always something about when my father said things like that to me. He wasn't one to often express how he felt but when he did you knew he meant every word he said.
He sighed. "How's Dean?"
"He's been good. I was just about to see him actually."
"I hope he's been treating you right."
I laughed. "He's not my boyfriend, dad. We're just best friends, you know this."
Dean and I also met our freshman year of university. We didn't have the same major but unlike most students, we were one of the few that had to start during summer. Hayley and I had English 101 together with him. Hayley, being the more outgoing one of the both of us, introduced me to him. She would invite him to go with us after class to get food or to hang out during school events. While our majors prevented us from taking certain classes together, we all kept in touch all this time.
Dean has been the one guy that my parents want in my life. My mother loves him like a son and my father trusts him enough to behave and take care of me while being alone with me.
"I know, but he should still be treating my princess right."
"Of course dad. He should be careful if he ever doesn't." With that my father laughed, "that's my girl."
I heard my mother say something before my father continued, "well I'll let you go now. Say hi to Dean for us and be careful. Call us or Dean for anything."
"I will. Bye dad."
I pulled the phone away before hanging the call and placing it in my back pocket. I grabbed my bag and made sure I had everything I needed for today. Laptop, check. Wallet, check. Keys, sunglasses and emergency kit, check.
I went to my mirrored jewelry stand that hung from my closet door and pulled out a gold coin necklace. The coin had a dragon embedded into it. Upon closing the stand, I looked at myself in the mirror. My outfit consisted of a white, yellow, and orange stripped tee that I had tucked into my ripped wide jeans. My white sneakers completed the look. My honey blonde hair remained as straight as always and just slightly past my shoulders. As for makeup, I kept it to just mascara and a bit of Vaseline on my lips.
I used to not see the point in wearing makeup, sometimes I still do. While others looked beautiful no matter how much they wore, wearing makeup could not hide what I saw was wrong with me. My body.
It didn't help when others made comments about it.
No matter how much I surrounded myself around people who didn't speak negatively about me, it didn't mean I didn't listen to those who did. Even when I did receive positive comments about me, the negative ones stuck with me. They would replay in my mind and I allowed myself to agree with them.
You eat so much, no wonder you're fat.
Being fat makes you ugly.
I've never seen a fat girl with hip dips. You'd expect her to have curvy hips or something since she eats so much.
Is extra large even her size? Her clothes looks too tight of her.
She's so big she takes up almost half the cafeteria table.
I knew giving them the satisfaction would only do harm, but I still did. It's true that I had hip dips. I was almost three sizes larger than the girls at my school. My height didn't help either. Being five foot eight made everyone turn to look at you, and most times, they didn't like what they saw.
At one point, I stopped eating as much. I wore even bigger clothes to hide my actual size. I started questioning whether my friends and family actually meant the things they said about me or whether they said them so I wouldn't feel bad.
I started leaving the house less. I didn't talk to my friends and family as much as I did. I almost didn't go to prom.
It wasn't until my parents caught me puking what had been that night's dinner did they force me to sit down and talk to them about what was going on. That night I yelled at them. I told them all the negative thoughts I would tell myself everyday. I cried to the point that the next morning my eyes were red and swollen.
It only made me feel worse about what I had done when I saw both of them cry that night.
Positive thoughts Alaina. Things are better now. You are better now.
And they were.
After that night, I got the help I needed. The next morning, my parents sat me down once more and talked about what they could do to help. I agreed for them to take me to see a therapist. I began to eat more and not get rid of it the way I had. Every night, we would all sit down and talk about how my day went, how I felt and if there was anything I needed to better help myself.
I was disappointed at myself for having done what I did. I didn't just hurt myself but my parents as well. However, while I was getting better, so was my relationship with my parents. I felt closer to them than I had in a long time and it made me realize how much I missed and needed them when I pushed them away.
I took a deep breath and watched as my reflection smiled.
I didn't change much physically since then, but I was happy. I realized my emotional health was more important than my physical health; and even if I wasn't skinny, I was still healthy.
I glanced at one of the sticky notes I placed on the mirror. You are loved no matter how you feel.
I read the one my parents wrote for me. You're doing great sweetie. We're proud of you.
My smile grew the more I read. I moved to Dean's note. You are beautiful :)
Finally, I read one that Hayley wrote. Stretch marks? Nah. Tiger stripes.
I let out a small laugh.
I ran my hand over my shirt, seeing that a lash had landed on it, and glanced once more at the mirror. I am better now.
I grabbed my things and headed outside. Once in the parking lot, I pulled my phone from my back pocket. I was about to call Dean, asking how close he was, when I heard the horn of a car. When I looked in the direction of the sound, I saw Dean's red Mazda 3 making its way out of a parking spot.
I walked to his car, making my way around it, and getting inside. "Morning!" I greeted Dean before placing my bag next to his in the backseat.
"Morning," he chuckled. "Did you eat?"
He wore a black hoodie that had a small print of a white teardrop, jeans, and black and white checkered sneakers. His messy curly dirty blonde hair slightly hung down his forehead. His black sunglasses hid his brown eyes.
"Yeah, Hayley made some for all of us before she left. You?"
"Not yet. Planning on stopping by the Student Union and grabbing something to take to class. Need to do anything before class? I can drop you nearby." Dean offered as he drove us past the gates of my apartment community.
"I'm good. I printed everything I needed yesterday."
The drive to campus took no more than ten minutes. We parked, glad that not many students had arrived to campus yet, and headed to the Student Union which was located at the center of campus.
"Want anything?" Dean asked as we approached the food court.
"Depends where you order from."
We came to a stop at an empty table and placed our things down. "Dunkin sounds good?"
"Yeah," I answered. "The usual is fine."
He nodded and walked to the line.
When he came back, he handed me my food. When we noticed we had twenty minutes to get to class, we grabbed our things and headed to class. Dean and I had a habit of always running late or coming close to it to any classes we had together.
"What happened to making it early to class?" I laughed. "You know new year new you?" I asked as we stepped into the Mathematical Sciences building.
He raised an eyebrow and smiled, causing his dimples to show. "What are you talking about? We're early."
"Three minutes early," I said as we stepped into our statistics classroom. Our professor glanced at us from his podium and welcomed us.
"This way." Dean grabbed my hand and lead us to a two person table that was at the center, closer to the back of the classroom. "Besides you said the same thing. You don't see me complaining."
I smiled. "Yeah yeah. Let's just eat."
I've wanted to write a mafia story for a while now and it's finally here. Let me know your thoughts on the first chapter.