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Tuesday 200 - #19

You hide it on the top shelf. Way up in the back, beneath sweaters you’ll never wear. You only keep them because they were gifts. You know Mom would be upset to learn you’d thrown them out, those V-neck polyester blends she said looked so nice on the mannequins at Target. You’re waiting for moths to eat them, but even the insects have taken against the synthetic fibers you grew up in.

You never speak about it. You couldn’t bear him finding it, and probably laughing, then droning on about how clearing things out creates space for the new. You don’t want to have the packrat argument again.

You know it’s just a faded photograph. A gangly teenager with horrible hair, an ill-fitting suit, braces on his teeth, and broken eyeglasses. You’re standing next to one of the popular girls. You figured she’d only said yes on a dare. You were self-conscious the entire night, thinking that everyone’s laughter was so much snickering behind your back. And yet you danced.

You know it’s the last vestige of a distant memory.

You hope it’s only you who still thinks you look like you did on prom night.

You leave it hidden.

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Last week's Tuesday 200.