• Mathura Hawley

advice

Updated: Aug 1, 2021


What I wanted was for Abby to see me and understand the pain that kept me from a single moment of peace. "

At 16, I was made co-editor of our high school newspaper and my first idea was to start an advice column. 300 pounds of me, dressed daily in a blue XXL Champion t-shirt, desperately wanted attention for who I was inside, but instead hid my shame behind the student mailbox and waited. I wrote to Dear Abby and asked her for advice on giving advice. Her letter came quickly, telling me to use common sense. I cried when I read it, feeling like a liar for my question. What I wanted was for Abby to see me and understand the pain that kept me from a single moment of peace. To tell me how to escape the fear and anxiety that drove me to bury myself under this enormous suit of weight that grew over my youth. To take my hand through the hell of this daily life of verbal degradation and self-abuse. With her letter in my hand, I stood in front of my parent’s full-length mirror and forced myself to look. Dear Abby, I thought, squinting with imagination, will I ever be anything but this ugly monster? Will I ever get out of this…


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