May 18th, 2012; Kressman Model Agency's Spring Fashion show for Symone's
Girls caked with make-up rushing to their dressing rooms. Managers yelling into bluetooths. Stage directors giving models stage directions. It was all pretty normal by now for Jess Miers. She watched the, what any other person would call ,madness erupt backstage that usually took place when her model agency was involved in a fashion show. She sighed as she got her make-up done by 3 people at the same time;a brush tickling her face, her mascara being done, and her lipstick being lined should all feel familiar by now, but it didn't for some reason.
Things were changing in her personal life that had thrown her off for the last few weeks; She and her little sister Jocelyn had been fighting over little stuff, mostly things Jess had started. This affected Jess at most because Jocelyn was her closest, and only, true friend. But that wasn't it; every since her eldest sister, Tena had been away from home for college, there was no one to seriously relate to, sure Jocelyn was her best friend, but when it came to emotional situations, Tena was the one to talk to.
Jess' dating life wasn't going well either; boys were supposed to want pretty model girls like her, but every relationship she had been in so far ended either because 1; Her and the boy she met never had time to spend together or 2; She soon realized the boy she was with only wanted to be with her for bragging rights. The most recent boy she had met at her college, CAC, which she spent limited time at because of her modeling schedule, had asked her out only so he could convince the whole campus they had slept together. She hoped maybe one day she'd find a nice guy.
"Jessica, darling!" She heard the familiar voice of her manager, Lauren, call after her. By then, the make-up team had left, allowing Jess to stand up in Lauren's presence. "Hey Lauren." Jess found herself speaking in a sentimental tone. "How are you feeling?" Before Jess could convince Lauren she felt fine when really felt like she was a zombie, Lauren spoke.
"You had better feel amazing, hun. 'Cuz this is a big show! Symone's is international, if you don't strut out there with every piece of confidence that you've ever had, you won't be as happy as you already are, ya hear me?"
"Okay." Jess simply replied, not really wanting to make conversation at the moment. Just then, she noticed how Lauren was over looking her body with a slight disgust but somewhat disappointment. Jess tugged down at the dress she was wearing, feeling insecure. "Darling, when was the last time you weighed yourself?" Lauren asked, pushing a side of her short blonde bob behind her ear."Err..last month, what is it?" Lauren shook her head, her mouth slightly open in shock.
"Honey, I don't know what you've been eating over the last month, but you look like you've gained like, 7 pounds! Last time I checked, your thighs weren't that thick and your stomach didn't stick out like that." Lauren pointed out the flaws that Jess didn't even seem to notice. Jess looked down at her body, noticing that she did get a little weight down at her thighs and stomach.
"Darling, just in case you forgot, we are not like other model agencies. We don't tell you to stop eating and all, but we don't tell you to pig out and not keep a good look on your weight either!" Jess felt guilt over come her body. She was pigging out, that ice cream parlor shop visit almost everyday with Jocelyn, the left overs that she usually didn't eat when her mother cooked dinner, the greasy lunch she ate when she found time to attend her CAC classes. All the things that she thought wouldn't harm her, were coming back to haunt her.
"Listen, a good group of friends could help you out. Why don't you stop clinging to that ditzy little sister of yours and start hanging out with the other models like Nancy and Taylor, especially for breakfast, lunch, brunch, supper, and dinner." Jess looked over to the two models who seemed to be a lot skinnier than herself; Nancy, the redhead with endlessly long legs giggled at Taylor, the blonde-blue eyed beauty who had probably cracked a joke to her.
"Ask them after the show if you can tag along with them for dinner. They're probably gonna pick up a salad or something-"
"THE SHOW STARTS IN TWO MINUTES!" Lauren was interrupted by the hollering stage director.
"I gotta go now, darling. Try not to let all that extra jiggle show when it's time to go out, yeah?"Lauren quickly said, running off, leaving Jess, who now felt extremely insecure at the words "Extra jiggle." Jess sighed, trying to block out all the insecurities that ran in her head, and prepped herself for the show.
/After the show/
The applause still rung in her ears as Jess sighed, making her way over to Nancy and Taylor, who were packing up their things, leaving for dinner. As soon as they noticed her approach, they stopped their blabber and waited for her to speak. "Heeyy, I'm Jessica, but you can call me Jess. I was wondering if I could tag along with you for dinner-"Just then, a group of other models came up to Nancy and Taylor, and Jess found herself trapped in a group models talking over each other. "Hey, you wanna go grab like, a salad or something?" She heard Taylor's breathy voice shout over the crowd. Several accepting replies were made, and soon the noisy group had departed.
Jess sighed, walking over to grab her stuff. "Guess I'll have to make a salad at home."
It was 9:30 pm, and Jess had finally made it home. She had been stuck in traffic, trying to ignore the growling sounds her stomach had made every once in a while. "Jess, you're finally here!" Jess heard her sister Jocelyn's perky voice as she made her way downstairs. There Jocelyn stood, in a blue hoodie, black leggings, a pair of Spongebob socks, and her then purple-ish hair pulled into a high pony tail. Even though she was dressed down in a way, she made Jess feel insecure.
"You will not believe what happened with-"
Jess cut Jocelyn off. "Ugghhh Jocelyn, can you not right now? I'm really tired, so if you could just-" Jess made a fanning motion with her hand towards the younger girl. "Scram" as she plopped down on the couch.
"Jeez Louise, what happened at the show?" Jocelyn joined her sister on the couch. Jess almost felt like bursting into tears, spilling every little thing that happened, from Lauren's nasty remarks to Nancy and Taylor rudely ignoring her when she tried to make their acquaintance. But she remembered her sister Aria's advice: Sometimes staying strong is the best thing to do.
"No, I'm just really tired, okay?"
"Oh that ole' 'I'm just really tired.' trick don't work on me." Jocelyn suddenly gasped at remembrance. "Ohhh! You're probably just hungry. Like that Snicker's commercial says 'You're not you when you're hungry!'. But never fear! Mom left you some chicken lasagna and rice in the fridge. I'll warm it up for you." Jess pulled Jocelyn back before she could make her way to the kitchen.
"No, I don't want that dried up chicken lasagna and rice." Jocelyn raised an eyebrow at her older sister.
"But Jess, that's your favorite thing mom cooks!"
"Tonight it isn't. I'm gonna make me a salad so I can head on up to bed."Jess said walking to the kitchen, as Jocelyn followed her.
"A salad?! What are you, a vegetarian now?" Jocelyn exclaimed, sitting on the kitchen isle. "Only if vegetarians don't eat." Jess mumbled, taking a bag of salad out of the refrigerator. Jocelyn must have not heard her because she went onto a different reason why Jess was acting strange. "But you can't cancel movie night! We were gonna watching The Scissoring!"Jocelyn reminded her sister. "Joss, I know that movie back and forth.What makes you think I'm gonna watch it for the ba-jillionth time?" Jess emptied the proceeds of the bagged salad into a bowl
Just then, Jess' brother, Reggie, had entered the kitchen. He had on a black tank top with gray sweat pants, which fit him well. Jess cringed, even her own brother was making her feel insecure. "I'm starved." He yawned, stretching out. "Well, since Jess' turned into a tree hugger, you can have the leftovers we left her."
Reggie turned to his sister once he took the plate out of the refrigerator. "I'm pretty sure she just didn't want the lasagna and rice, I mean mom cooks it like, every week. She's just human, getting tired of the constant."
Jess smirked at her younger brother. Even though he had no idea of the real truth, he sure saved her from Jocelyn's interrogation.
"But she's canceling our movie night!" Jocelyn whined once more. "I need somebody to hold on to for the scary parts of The Scissoring."
"Listen Jocelyn, just go to sleep tonight. Jess just came from work, yeah? I'm pretty sure the last thing she wants to do is hold you during a movie she's seen for the ba-jillionth time."Reggie put the plate in the microwave.
"Fine, but we're watching it tomorrow even if I have to drag you to the couch." Jocelyn jumped off the kitchen isle, heading upstairs. Jess sighed in relief, sticking her head in the refrigerator, looking for a bottle of ranch dressing. "Thanks getting Jossie off my back-" As soon as Jess took her head out of the fridge, she saw her brother's serious face.
"Now what's this really about?"