GENRE: YA- Contemporary
After I set the timer for the double-chocolate cupcakes, I carry the duct-taped laundry basket through the living room. Just as I pass the couch, where I see my brother Skunk’s video game is on pause, he roughly bumps into me from behind. The basket and I careen toward the tall shelf that holds Mama’s porcelain doll collection. It teeters, and I imagine the dolls crashing to the floor and ghastly shards of half-broken frozen smiles leering at me, but thankfully, it rights itself. Only wet laundry spills on the carpet as I let the basket go and catch myself on the back of the couch. I lower down to hands and knees to pick up the sopping clothes.
“Get out of the way Sugar,” Skunk shouts as his orange soda nearly sloshes out of the plastic big-gulp cup. He plops back into his divot on the sofa. “Damn. You’re always in the way.”
“Sorry,” I say softly.
But it’s true. I am always in the way. I’ve known this for as long as I can remember. The fat Puerto-Rican-Polish girl, who doesn’t feel like she belongs in her skin or anywhere else for that matter, has always been too much and yet not enough.
I struggle to slide the back door along its dirt-encrusted track, trying to force it wide enough to fit the basket and me through. I walk into the sunshine letting it warm my face for a moment.