My jaw drops.Â “Selfish?Â You’re calling me selfish?Â You have no idea what I’ve gone through.Â You have no idea what it’s like to be fat and betrayed and abandoned and insulted, so until you do, don’t lecture me about being selfish.”
Sands relents a bit.Â “Bella, come on, you know I love you like a sister and I just want to help.Â We all do.”
“So blasting me for supposedly being selfish is your way of helping?Â Thanks, but no thanks.”Â I drop onto the sofa, which sags under my weight.Â Like my heart.
“Will you look at yourself?” Sands says.
“I try not to,” I grumble.
Sands moves over and places a hand on my arm.Â “You know what your trouble is?”
I glare at her.Â “Don’t even start.Â I don’t want to hear it.”
She grips my arm.Â “But you need to.Â Your trouble is that you are so low on yourself, you open up your legs for a hug.”
My eye pop out of my head.Â “Oh.Â My. God.Â You think I slept with my date?Â That’s not what happened at all.”
Sands looks confused.Â “So you’re not hiding and tried to kill yourself because you hate yourself for sleeping with him?”
“No!”Â I bellow.Â “Sands, given me more credit than that.Â I did not sleep with him.Â Not that I would have wanted to from the way he kept texting his ex-girlfriend the entire time, besides the fact he said I was so fat that I probably hadn’t slept with anyway for so long that I should take what I can get and was aching for it.”Â Sands looks stunned.Â “Oh yeah, it’s true, he really said that, and then accused me of embarrassing him when I walked out of the restaurant.”Â I held out my arm, which still carried a bruise from Wesley’s grip.
And then the tears came.Â I held them on for days but now they flowed freely.Â Sands hugged me until I could cry no more.
“Thanks,” I sniffled as she hands me a tissue.Â “God, I felt so terrible.Â I lied about my weight to get someone’sâ€”anyone’sâ€”attention and instead of looking at the real me, he calls me fat to my face.Â I hate men.Â I really do.Â They don’t care about your feelings or your mind.Â They just care about looks and once they get you in bed, it’s all over and they move onto the next woman.”
Sands hands me another tissue.Â “You know that’s not true.Â That’s just the excuse you tell yourself because you’re so scared of not being accepted.Â You hide behind your weight and sabotage any real relationships that potentially could be good for you by picking them to pieces. Â I’m not saying that’s the case with this date, but I watch you do it with others all the time.”
“Who?” I demand, affronted that Sands can’t just commiserate with me.Â Oh, no, she has to accuse me of wrongdoing.
“Tiresa, Mika, Mama Rose, me, Riyaanâ€”” she rattles off a list.