Sometimes I feel as though I can’t speak, as if my vocal cords have left to gather dust in some unused corner of an ancient home. But my body is not a home. I have left it for too long, chasing after the visions of long, slender legs and protruding collarbones on the TV screens.

I place a hand on my throat, and feel the tightness that has been wound up by years of wishing to shrink. The tension, a sheet of permafrost, begins to dew with the warmth of my hand – an acknowledgment that perhaps my body deserves touch, though it is not “there” yet. A finger rests on my collarbone. Stiff. Unloving. But trying as it can. Feather light in its fear and uncertainty, as tight as metal.