Taylor walked into the kitchen to see his mother cooking away for the annual Hanson family Christmas party.
He hated it. Not because of annoying family members pinching his face saying how cute he was or how he grew up so much or even misbehaved children making a mess of his things. It was the simple fact that that was the time of the year other than thanksgiving that he couldn’t get out of eating in front of everyone. Normally he could eat very little and no one would notice but for some reason during the holidays, his parents paid close attention to his eating habits.
Mrs. Hanson turned around fast from mashing the potatoes to see Taylor standing there.
“Honey, is there something you want?” She asked.
“Uh…no…no…thanks anyway Mom.” Taylor smiled and walked out of the room.
“Hey Tay, mom made brownies, want one?” Zac asked as he came from the hallway.
“No…no thanks.” Taylor stammered. He ran into his room and closed the door, locking it behind himself. He had luck, no one else was in there with him, not even Ike. He walked over to his closet and opened the door to find his full-length mirror. Taylor glanced at himself and sighed sadly. All HE could see was fat, not just a little but a lot. He pulled up his shirt and looked at his stomach.
“I’m so disgusting looking.” He said to himself. He quickly put his shirt down and closed his door. He walked over to his dresser and rummaged through it, trying to find anything that would hide his “fat”. He found a large sweatshirt that used to be his father’s and pulled it on. He walked out of his room, hoping no one would talk to him.
At around 6:00, everyone in the Hanson family sat down for their Christmas dinner. Taylor looked around hesitantly, trying to figure out a way so that he could get out of eating in front of everyone. Zac of course sat down next to him and smiled as he automatically grabbed a piece of celery next to Taylor, and chomped away. Taylor cringed and looked away.
“Hey Tay, Mom made all kinds of good things for dinner.” Zac smiled as he glanced at the table filled with food.
“That’s great Zac.” Taylor sighed. As soon as they all said grace, everyone began digging in, except Taylor. He just stared at the food. He wanted to eat it. He loved his mother’s food but he just couldn’t go through the possibility of gaining any more weight.
“Aren’t you going to load up your plate?” Zac asked as he grabbed a piece of turkey and laid it on his plate.
“Uh…I’m not that hungry.” Taylor said, pushing his empty plate forward.
“Oh come on Tay, just have some turkey at least.” Zac smiled and put a piece on Taylor’s plate.
“Zac, I’m not hungry, please don’t do that.” Taylor said angrily.
“Honey, aren’t you feeling good?” Mrs. Hanson’s voice startled Taylor into looking up at her.
“Uh…I…uh…” Taylor stammered.
“Just have a little, I made everything you like.” His mother’s caring eyes stared into his.
“All…all right.” He said and smiled hesitantly. He grabbed the bowl of mashed potatoes next to him and scooped a tiny bit onto his plate.
“Tay, that’s pathetic…” Zac began to joke.
“Shut up Zac and mind your own damn business!” Taylor said between gritted teeth. Zac was taken a little a back by Taylor’s harshness.
“Sorry…I didn’t mean to…uh…” Zac began to apologize. Taylor just gave him a dirty look and picked up his fork.
Taylor stared down at his food, occasionally pushing it around with his utensil. Whenever his mother or father was looking, he would shove a forkful in his mouth, swallowing reluctantly.
"I can’t stand this. I can’t keep eating like this! I’m going to gain all kinds of weight…" Taylor thought. Every once in awhile, when no one was looking, he would spit any access food into his napkin and keep it near his lap. As soon as everyone finished, he hi-tailed it to the bathroom where he stood there, staring at himself in the mirror.
He already was starting to look pale and drawn from lack of food. He shook his head and looked at himself closer. He pulled up his father’s old sweatshirt and once again looked at his stomach in the mirror.
"Oh my God, how am I going to lose the weight if I eat so much?" He thought. Taylor stopped and looked down at the toilet to the side of the vanity. He had never done it before although he certainly had considered it.
“Just this once…” He said. He sat down on the floor and lifted the lid in front of himself. He braced the side of the bowl with his hands and stared down at the pool of toilet water in front of him. He closed his eyes and finally brought his hand to his face. With one quick motion, he reached his finger down his throat and with it came anything that he had just consumed. He racked with coughs as he “cleansed” himself of anything he had just eaten. He opened his eyes just as he pulled back and rested his head against the wall. He looked up at the ceiling, watching as the room began to spin. He put his hand to his head to attempt to make it stop. He grabbed a wash cloth and stood up slowly. He turned on the cold water and soaked the wash cloth in it and wiped his mouth clean. He looked at himself in the mirror again and sighed. He threw the dirty wash cloth on the vanity and flushed the toilet.
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