through the days and weeks and months where i didn’t eat and let the monster of hunger make home in my belly, i knew my size. my horrible, big, ugly size. the bold number taunted me as slipped on my jeans in the morning, and wiggled quickly out of them at night. i knew my size because that number haunted me in every minute and moment. i flinched to think that of things that added up to that number, like 2 and 4. and when that monster called hunger in my belly stirred, i clenched my fists and whispered the number fiercely. i was that number. that number summed up my worth. and the monster called hunger paced in the cage of my ribs growling in a demand for food. but i was ruthless. and during this time hunger and i made an uneasy truce. i told myself i wasn’t hungry. and the monster was musseled. this sort of self control came hard because in the deepest part of me there was a little bit of light. and this light always told me that i didn’t need to be hungry anymore. after all, there was food. i could eat it…………..could i? trapped in a world of my own devising, food tasted like sawdust as it slid unwanted down my throat. and my size haunted me then. and when this time of starving ended and i started trying to be full again, i lost my number. it fled from my mind being chased by this new positivity i was trying. and suddenly the storm that this number had contained oh so carefully inside of my skin erupted. my number was something that had kept me centered and trapped inside the freckled expanse of my skin. but now that it was gone i was a sandstorm of pale skin and heat. i was an unstoppable storm of rage. and then one day i grabbed a size off the rack and felt the jeans settle on my hips. and the size tag that touched the tip of my spine grabbed control of me again. and i felt ok. i had a size now. a size that gave me a worth. and every day i ponder on the strangeness of a girl who hates number but somehow finds herself more in control of herself when she has one attached to the denim around her waist. but i’ve always been that kind of unorthodox girl. but then i finally found my size and i felt my life the earth’s shifting plates, settle smoothly back in. i had a size. there is strangeness to me being so afraid of my life without a number to center it around. there is also some lingering addiction from my obsession over numbers that led me to trust the scale with my very life. (which it almost ruined) but what i find is most unsettling is the fact that my size now is a shifting thing. a changing digit which upsets my life at will. and i find myself ordering shirts that are too big, with sleeves that effortlessly fall past my fingertips. words are strange like that to me now. my life was influenced by numbers for so long that i find myself having to memorize letters all over again. the easiest lessons such as how many letters are in the alphabet, seem strange. numbers have found a way to settle themselves at the very core of me, and some days i find myself fighting against my life being centered around them. i rebel against the number pressed firmly to the tip of my spine and with desperation wiggle out of the trapping denim. but the next day i always slip back in and go to school. i can’t rebel against the numbers because i always fall apart, i always lose focus. and i am so lost because my number is shifting that i find myself wearing too big shirts, too tight jeans and feeling my jacket tighten over my shoulders. my shirts may not go by number, but i find myself confused by just looking at the letter. i have never liked “s” and “m” is for the name that it is mine though it seems so strange. so i picked “l.” there are no bad memories with l. L stands for love and lipids and lonely and lucky and line. and while these seem both familiar and foreign, i find myself lost. numbers and letters confuse me now. i don’t know my size and i don’t know me. i am so used to depending upon a number to tell me worth, that i don’t dare find out who i am without one.