Written By: Brandon Jamil
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EVELYN walks into the bridal shop and is escorted to the fitting room; where her mother is waiting. Evelyn’s mother greets her with a half-hearted smile, and cold hug. Evelyn sighs walks towards the fitting room with her prelected gowns. Minutes later Evelyn walks out, and she can see the disappointment painted on her mother’s face.
“Still haven’t lost the twenty pounds I see.”
“Mom I’ve been killing myself working out, and dieting.”
“You need a new diet. No one wants to see a fat bride. I am certain your soon to be husband doesn’t want a fat woman.”
Evelyn lowered her head and walked back into the dressing room. Evelyn shut the curtain and tears began to well in her eyes. She decides to hold back her tears and carry on with her fitting. Evelyn tries on another dress that is white and flowing with lace around the sleeves, and a long train stationed on the back of the dress. Evelyn is in love with dress. It hides her fat, it compliments her curves and she feels like a princess. Before Evelyn walks out of the dressing room, she pauses and glances at herself in the mirror and smiles. Evelyn opens the curtain and rushes out to her mother. By this time the attendant has returned with red wine for Evelyn’s mother.
“Jesus, didn’t I teach you anything? Walk with your head up and while you’re at it, tuck your shoulders back. Don’t embarrass me.”
“Evelyn you’re truly beautiful. Can you please walk towards me and do a light spin?” the attendant asked.
Evelyn walks towards the attendant and twirled. Evelyn begins laughing and thanks the attendant for the compliment. “This lady doesn’t love you. She is paid to say you look good. Your fat is hanging over the back of the dress. I can see your rolls from here. While you’re at it, whiten your teeth; yellow teeth aren’t pleasant in photos.”
“Mother why are you always be negative? This is my day, why can’t you be happy for me?”
“My negativity is what kept you alive all these years. You’d better be grateful. Evelyn’s mother aggressively excuses herself outside for a quick smoke break. Evelyn runs to the fitting room and shuts the curtain, she begins weeping in her hands. The attendant remains professional and acts occupied with other work duties. Several minutes later, Evelyn’s mother walked back into the dressing room sitting area. She can hear her daughter sniffling. “Pull yourself together, I don’t want to see you miserable.”
Evelyn sniffles one last time and dries her eyes. She walks back out to her mother with the same dress on. “If you think I’m hard, welcome to the real world. The only difference between me and them is, I’ll tell you the truth, because I want you to win.”
“Your truth is bullshit! You’re hard on me because dad left you for a younger woman.”
“Wrong again little girl. I left your father. Do you know how many nights he came crawling back?”
“Mother just shut up! We all know dad left you with nothing. We know that he divorced you and remarried a younger woman and gave her everything.” Evelyn’s mother broke eye contact and they both stood in silence.
“You can’t be fat Evelyn. You can’t have yellow teeth. You can’t have tattered clothes. You can’t have tattoos. You can’t be wild and careless.”
“Sean is marrying me because he loves my mind, not just the surface.”
“Young and dumb. Your looks will fade, you will grow old. He will look better and by that time he’ll be at the height of his career. He will want younger, because he can afford her.”
“Not all men think like that mother!”
“Waste your life believing he’s marrying you for your mind and end up like most women my age; alone.”
“I won’t make the same mistakes that you made. I will adore my husband.”
“Adore your husband by fixing your teeth and loosing the weight. Oh, and you’d better watch porn and learn all the tricks.”
“What does porn have to do with it?”
“Men marry average women for comfort, but they desire sex symbols. You’d be a fool to think your husband wants vanilla sex.”
“God damnit mother, you ruin everything.” Before Evelyn’s mother could respond, the attendant walked back to check on the soon to be bride.
“Evelyn, would you like to try on another style dress?” Evelyn looks over at her mother and her mother nodded at the attendant. The attendant left in search of more classic style dresses.
“I became a feminist at your age. I thought femininity, looks, weight didn’t matter. Until I realized that the other women knew the game. They weren’t victims to their womanhood.”
“Their lives revolve around the approval of a man. Their victims to patriarchy.”
“I thought you knew. Men tremble in the presence of beautiful women.”
“That’s nonsense. Women don’t have to play stupid for a man.”
“I suppose you’re right. How about we all just dress sloppy, refuse to do our hair and makeup, gain weight. We could all just become today’s feminist by protesting and make a fool of ourselves. Surely men would understand. Especially since we want to be so independent.” Evelyn rushed to the fitting room and removes her dress. She grabbed her purse and ran out of the bridal shop. Evelyn’s mother didn’t blink an eye and polished the remnants of her wine. Evelyn’s mother broken her daughter, causing her daughter to eventually leave the man she was about to marry. Her job was done.
©2018 Brandon Jamil All Rights Reserved.