My Eyelashes

A Look Into My Family – Sophia Yeo
Avery Wood

My eyelashes are angry with me. 

I stayed up too late, forgot to take care of them. 

Forgot to clean them, be grateful for them. 

Most days I’m ok,

I go about my normal day, it’s routine. 

I use them, without knowledge or care.

Unless someone says, “you’re so lucky, you have such long eyelashes.”

And then I remember that I’ve forgotten to be thankful for them. 

At night I spend a little extra care, I’m a little more delicate. 

As I remove the makeup that binds them into those long pleasing crests.

The eyeshadow that dusts over them after every blink. 

The eyeliner that coats my eyes to red.

A standard for beauty, they say.

And then the next morning I forget. 

All over again I forget to be thankful, and grateful, and kind. 

Those days I glue them up tight just to feel something new

To feel pretty, to feel loved, to get that attention that feels like true happiness for a moment.

Something like authentic, but a little bit more sour. 

And then it fades as the night is clouded in smoke and bitterness. 

The makeup smudges from tears of another night of emptiness. 

The makeup smears from the heavy breath and sweat of another nobody who would never remind me to care for my lashes. 

The makeup splatters from another night walking home alone in the rain. 

Then I climb in my bed, or someone else’s, 

My eyelashes long forgotten.

And in the morning they hate me again. 

I did not give them the care they deserved and they were left caged and breaking all night. 

And I hate myself for what I’ve done to them because I know I’m lucky to have them. 

That they’re worth so much more than what I’ve given them. 

I curl up alone and cry or something like it because I cannot cry. 

Sleep through the hole in my heart that’s tearing me from the inside out. 

Dance and smile through the weight of it all. 

And then there are some days when I know exactly what I’m doing. 

When I lay around hating myself.

Neglecting my eyelashes because I know that I will never deserve them. 

That I should let them shrivel up and die.

To show everyone some semblance of the pain inside.

I go to sleep knowing they will hate me in the morning. 

But all my energy has been put into my smile for the day and I have nothing left to give.

I wake up in the morning, another day and I’m still here, still hurting. 

I wish it wasn’t true. 

I wish my eyelashes weren’t angry with me.