Hello, Eden. Look at you, staring back at me in the mirror with that coy smile, all proper and pristine. Look at the way you talk with that melodic voice of yours and how you stand so confidently with your back straight and your hands on your pockets like nothing in the world can stop you. You the image of perfection, Eden. You’re what they expect and what they admire…
And where am I? Why is it that when I look in the mirror, all I see is you, Eden, but not me? They only see you, Eden, but they don’t see me. To them, I’m nothing but an illusion, a state of mind, an imaginary friend, a phase, an obsession.
I’m not an obsession.
Yet every time someone shoots a glance my way, they don’t see me because all eyes are on you, Eden. Scanning you, admiring you, judging you. I try… I try to make them see. I dress you up as me and bind your breasts so your body is the same as mine. I pull back your hair and twist it and curl it inside a cap until it looks exactly like mine. I dress you up in my clothes and try to use your lips to get them to hear. And still they don’t see me. They just see you, Eden, trying on a new style or playing dress up. They never see me. So I try to scream but they don’t seem to hear a thing. And when I whisper “this is who I am”, they look through me as if I didn’t exist. Do I even exist?
A life without being heard, that’s a lonely life. And a lonely life is not one worth living.
Perhaps the reason they don’t hear me is because I muffle my own screams with your hands. Perhaps the reason why they look through me is because my whispers aren’t loud enough to hear. Perhaps the reason why no one sees me, perhaps the reason they only see you is because I am always standing behind you. Because you see, Eden, you’re nothing more than an empty body, a façade created by them and what they deem to be perfect. I’ve been hiding behind you, Eden. I’ve been using you as a shield, trying to avoid the hate that might come might way if I let you go. But it’s time to let you go. Because every day I hide behind you, I grow weaker, and smaller, and helpless.
I am not helpless.
I refuse to see you, Eden, as the image I see in the mirror. You are not me, Eden.
This is me.