Years later, my aunts, who were never skinny, marveled at the collective slenderness of their progeny. They called me a beanpole, and I took it for what it was — a loving compliment accessorized with envy.
Now, there’s my 10-year-old daughter, who is sobbing hysterically. Her eyelids are swollen because she doesn’t like the way any of her pants look on her. She’s looking for a pair that fits her well. She’s looking for a miracle. But this is not about the pants.
“I look like a freak,” she says. “Everybody says so. A skinny freak. I hate being skinny.” It all spills out of her now: people tease her about her body. They call her string bean and toothpick. Beanpole.