I slipped my heels off once I sat back down at my desk. My office chair squeaked as I put my weight on it. I cringed on the inside, but I had to remind myself that most office chairs creak and squeak no matter what size you are. I still peered around to the workers at their desks around me to see if they reacted to my squeaking chair.
Not a soul was looking in my direction and I internally sighed with a sigh of relief. I lost a lot of weight, but I still carry myself as if I am at my larger size. No matter how much weight I lost I still have thick th*ghs. I have worked to attempt to tone them as best as I can at least.
I do notice the fact that men actually check me out now. I do have an hourglass figure now even though I am not completely skinny. I still have some chunk and I am learning to accept that about myself. Still men seem to appreciate my long dirty blonde hair and crystal blue eyes now. It’s probably the hourglass figure that helps too.
I got down to my goal weight and now I just have to live with the areas that didn’t completely smooth out like my stomach. It may have chunk to it, but I can still wear a dress and my stomach appears mostly flat. For a formerly fat person that means a lot. I just wanted to be seen as a worthy person to love.
All my effort paid off. I finally attracted my now boyfriend, James. I met him at the gym a few weeks ago. He got on the treadmill next to mine. I hadn’t noticed him at first. He told me he noticed me and for a few weeks he made a point to use the treadmill next to mine hoping I would notice him.
I stopped paying attention to who is at the gym a long time ago because I heard what some gym goers would say about me when I started out. I just put my ear buds in and listen to my music loud enough to drown people out.
The only reason I talked to James is because when I got off my treadmill my ponytail caught around my ear and when I made a move to brush my hair off my ear, I caught my earbud, and it went flying hitting James. I couldn’t find it at first until we realized it somehow slid into his pocket.
I had been searching all over the floor under his treadmill, mine, other treadmills around ours. He felt bad and had put his hand in his pocket after searching for a while and that’s when he pulled my missing earbud out of his pocket. To apologize for disturbing his gym time I offered to buy him dinner as compensation.
He agreed and we went to dinner that Friday and have been together since. It is still a fairly new relationship, but I am optimistic. I even asked if he would come to my ten-year high school reunion in a few more weeks. I just don’t want to go back and still seem like the fat loser I was in school. Many things have changed since high school, but…
My half brother Jayson convinced me to come finish school here in Colorado. I needed the change. He ironically is my older brother by ten months. My dad had been cheating on my mom through their marriage. He got his girlfriend Carly pregnant, and she gave birth to Jayson.
My mom had panicked and felt she was losing my dad. She got him drunk and ended up pregnant with me. Even though my dad had been able to hide Carly and Jayson one of my mom and dad’s mutual friends spotted him with Carly and Jayson and my mom was informed.
My dad filed for divorce on the spot. When I was born the courts split custody six months with each parent. I sometimes wished I were just put in foster care. The only person in my family that showed any love for me was Jayson.
My mom moved away to the next state over to get away from the shame knowing her husband had been cheating on her and had a baby with his lover. Adding the fact that he chose to divorce her and marry Carly. What my dad did to my mom caused her to have an unending string of men in her life.
I have been taking care of myself since I was five. When I was with my dad Jayson helped to take care of me when I would be brushed aside by my dad. His mom didn’t really like me either. They gave me a room in the basement to not have to deal with me. Jayson is the only person to love me no matter what. So, I didn’t mind my mom moving out of state in fourth grade.
It was difficult on me to go to two schools every year, but I did meet Jordan in fourth grade. I met Jordan when I stepped in between him and some kids who were bullying him. I got knocked down for it, but we became friends immediately.
No matter what happened between Jordan and me getting bullied we were always there for each other when I lived the six months with my mom. He meant everything to me while growing up.
Jordan’s mom Diane was simply happy her youngest son wouldn’t be alone at school even if for a brief period of time each year. She also always wanted a daughter and lord knows mine didn’t care enough about me. I still call and text Diane when I get the chance to. She stopped bringing up Jordan years ago because she noticed I wouldn’t talk to her all that often when she did. She doesn’t know what happened fully between Jordan and me. I don’t want her to.
Jordan was the only one aside from Jayson that seemed to care for me. I grew to love him giving him my heart and later my virginity when he asked to take it. I thought it would be Jordan and me forever the moment we started to have s*x. I realize now I was just a stupid teenage girl that associated s*x with love.
I close myself off to most everyone. I don’t feel I deserve love. Especially when Jordan made a fool of me our senior year. He broke my heart, and it has affected me with a fear that I am unworthy of love. I found the guy I thought I would love forever at nine and I learned how wrong I was.
Now I guard my heart. I hope that James will help me move on from Jordan. If I happen to see him at the reunion maybe I can finally let my past go and truly heal the heart, Jordan crushed so awfully long ago.
“Earth to Alaina.” Tasha said. I removed my earbud from my ear. “Sorry, I didn’t hear you.” I lied. I wasn’t listening to anything I was lost in thought. I wasn’t going to admit that to her. She is my boss, and I am still here on a trial period. They needed extra help to finish out uploading their paper documents to digital for the year.
Too many people had taken off for summer and there was so much needed to be done before September. The job placement had sent me here to Tasha Turner. I didn’t have as much experience as she would have wanted, but she was desperate.
I hate that I got hired temporarily on a technicality, but I was determined to prove myself and when September came hopefully, I could become a permanent employee.
“I need you to look over these budgets for these projects. They can’t greenlight development until every number is accounted for.” Tasha handed me a stack of folders full of papers. I plastered a fake pleasant smile on my face. Of course, she would add extra work to my already full workload.
I have been adding the projects to the computer system to eliminate the printed paperwork. It is also easier to budget, change things, and access any status of the project that needs changing or additions made to it. The owners of The Green Company want to go paperless.
They hired Tasha’s accounting firm to work within their offices to manage budgeting and go paperless. Tasha had to agree to transfer to a paperless system as soon as she could. She has been working on that for the past year almost since they added her firm to their office. She hires individually still as per her contract with The Green Company.
I groaned looking at this stack of work. I want to get as much work done as I can. Tasha allowed me the time for my reunion, but I have to get this work done before then. I opened my bottom drawer to my desk. I’m going to need my zero-sugar triple shot coffee. Its going to be another late night. I popped the top to my can of coffee and took a big sip.
Let’s go brain. I thought to myself.
I unlocked the door to the small apartment Jayson, and I share. He looked at me from his position on the couch. “Long day?” He asked. I mumbled and groaned as I took my heels off. “I got you a grilled chicken salad. It’s in the fridge.”
“I could kiss you bro.” I love grilled chicken salads. “Put your stuff up and change. I’ll get your salad for you.” I grinned at Jayson. I trudged down the hallway to my bedroom. It’s small, but I don’t care it’s a roof over my head.
I stripped out of my work clothes and pulled out a pair of boxer shorts and a tank top. The weather has gotten hotter sooner and it was a few weeks before it was officially summer. We only have an air conditioning unit in our living room that is ancient. We try not to use it if we can avoid it to save on the electric bill.
I made my way back into the living room and plopped down on the couch next to Jayson. He handed me my salad and I leaned back and dug in. He was watching something on Netflix about venomous animals, or maybe dangerous animals? I wasn’t paying too much attention. I just stared at the screen trying to unwind from today and enjoy my grilled chicken salad. I enjoy times like these with Jayson. I don’t care what he’s watching its just spending time together even if we aren’t talking.
I feel like I’m flying, and it feels nice. Now I am laying against a solid surface. I cracked my eye open. I saw Jayson’s face a few inches from mine. “What?” Is all I could get out. “Shh, go back to sleep. You fell asleep on the couch, and I carried you to your bed. Get some rest sis.” Jayson said as he covered me with my blanket and turned my fan on. I was already almost out again before he turned my fan on.
My alarm went off and I reached for my phone to shut it off. I stretched as I let my eyes come into focus. I kicked off my blanket and made my way to the bathroom. I flicked on the light and groaned at my reflection. My hair and face could be the stuff of nightmares if any horror movie director needed inspiration. I must have slept hard. Normally I toss and turn fairly frequently in the night and use the bathroom at least once.
I pulled my boxer shorts and panties down so I could pee. I could tell how I slept straight through the night because I felt like I was about to set a record on how much a woman has peed in one bathroom use.
Then I thought about a pregnant woman and decided they probably have me beat. It still made me chuckle to myself at my sleepy first morning nonsense thoughts. I washed my hands after flushing and started to prepare for my shower.
I was showered, shaved, and everything else I needed to do including dressed within thirty minutes. I chose an inverted ponytail for my hair today which saved a little time. It looks nice and my hair will lay against my head and neck instead of whipping about, or too many hairs coming loose.
I climbed into the driver’s side of my old Honda civic. It has seen better days, but it still runs and gets me where I need to go. I buckled myself in and put my sunglasses on before starting my car. I released the emergency brake and shifted into reverse. I reversed out of my parking spot and then shifted into first gear and made my way to work.
I found a spot towards the middle levels of the parking garage. I guess I could consider myself lucky I am not on the top level and the sun can take its time to bake my car all day. I made my way down in the garage elevator to get to street level and made my way into the building.
“Good morning, Daryl, Clinton.” I greeted the security guards. “Good morning, Alaina. Did you bring us any goodies today?” Clinton asked. “No, I’m really sorry, but I worked late last night and crashed soon after I got home. I promise I will bring you some treats soon.” “You better.” Daryl said sternly and completely seriously before he cracked a smile, and we all began laughing.
I had watched so many workers pass by them and not say good morning or acknowledge them on a daily basis. I made sure I started saying good morning every morning. It doesn’t take much to make someone’s day even simply by saying good morning. I love baking and Daryl and Clinton have volunteered along with Jayson to be my guinea pigs on trying my sugar free goodies. I think their wives appreciate that they can eat my goodies with less guilt.
I try to control my sugar intake. It has helped me to maintain my weight loss. Sometimes when I am having a difficult day I binged on the sugary stuff. I regret it after, but I am not perfect. I climbed into the elevator that packed itself quickly. It took a few extra minutes to get to the twentieth floor as workers were getting off at each floor from the sixteenth floor and up. I made my way to my desk and turned my computer on as I settled myself in for the day.
I had to slip my heels back on to go and discuss a discrepancy in a couple of numbers on the page on which I was working. I can usually figure out the number, but I just really can’t decipher the numbers this time. Tasha is a ninja at figuring any number that I can’t figure out. I waited behind another worker asking her something else in the paperwork they are working on.
“What do you need Alaina?” Tasha asked. “I really can’t decipher these numbers here.” I pointed on the page as I handed it to her. She put the page under a small but very bright lamp she has on her desk. She turned the page a little to look at it from different angles.
“Sixty-three.” She answered after a minute of inspection. “Thanks. I thought it could be a six, but I saw an eight for the three.” I commented. “Yeah. It looks like the numbers got written over more than once. I think they had an eight there once, but the indentation is old and the three is fresher.” Tasha explained. I nodded and took the page from her to head back to my desk.
My stomach began to growl. I was brought out of my work because I couldn’t ignore the loud growl it made. I looked at the time on my computer. I had worked through my first break and past lunch. I don’t want to lose too much of my groove. I have been making a dent in my workload.
I decided to splurge on a pizza for dinner. Jayson would like that. I picked up my cell and shot off a text to Jayson.
Me-pizza for dinner?
Him-make sure they put enough bacon on it this time.
Before I could put my phone down, I got another text. I looked and it was from James. He sent me heart emojis and the kissing emojis. I blushed. I sent a few of the same emojis back to him. He was in Denver with his parents this week and I couldn’t wait for him to get back.
I missed my gym partner and Jayson doesn’t always have the time to join me at the gym. I was going to have to put in extra workouts this weekend because I haven’t found the time this week yet and I don’t know if I will find the time to hit the gym.