she never saw her mother wear the dress, but she knew it was once hers. it was the dress from her childhood, the one she would put on in secret, waiting to be tall enough, waiting to grow curves to fit. she saw the dress as the most perfect dress. when she could wear the dress, she would know she was a woman, like her mother. but she tripped on the dress, she wasn’t tall enough, or curvy enough, and she would struggle to put it back on the hanger before someone came down the stairs and found her half-naked in the basement.
one thing happened and then something else, and years went by and she forgot about the dress. now she is a woman, or at least close enough. she is helping sell old things to strangers in her parents’ driveway. she finds the dress between ancient holiday sweaters. she dusts it off and takes it home. it is hers at last and even though she is tall enough and curvy enough, when she wears it her ears still strain for the sound of footsteps on the stairs, afraid she will be caught pretending she is a woman.
Courtney Marie is a writer currently residing in Denton, Texas. She is a copywriter by day, and otherwise an avid reader, book collector, and cat person. A poorly maintained website can be found here.