Accommodating Her

Cody slipped her top half through the doorway with relative ease, but her bottom half would take more effort. She frowned with consternation as her hips wedged in the narrow kitchen entryway. With a grunt, she twisted sideways and dragged herself through. Clear of the frame, she pulled her long legs inside.

"Hello, dear," her mother said from the other side of the kitchen island. "You can still fit through the door. That's good."

"Barely," Cody muttered, checking her phone.

"Any luck on a job?"

Cody shook her head.

"Maybe it’s time to think about returning to college."

Cody gave a noncommittal shrug. She stuck her phone in her pocket and opened the fridge. She took a full carton of orange juice, chugged it, and tossed the empty carton in the general direction of the recycle bin. "We're out of juice again."

"Okay," her mother said, retrieving the carton from the floor while her daughter polished off a box of leftover chicken tenders and chugged a two-liter soda.

"Honey, as you've gotten...bigger, food doesn't last like it used to. Perhaps you could slow down. Have some water first."

Cody let loose a thunderous belch and retrieved the tub of leftover beef stew. She shoveled the contents into her mouth and left the container on the counter. Her mother continued to pick up after her.

"Have you seen a doctor yet?"

"Next opening is in two weeks," Cody said, pouring the remainder of a bag of chips into her mouth. Her phone vibrated in her pocket. She tossed the bag aside and rose to her feet, remaining hunched over with the eight-foot ceiling pressed against the small of her back. She tapped the screen and scanned the notification.

"I'll be down for dinner."

Her mother nodded and stepped aside as her daughter squeezed past her into the living room. Crawling up the stairs, Cody's broad hips splintered several uprights in the wooden banister. She straightened her legs to get more clearance. Her mother watched her progress with a heavy sigh. She retrieved the wood glue from a nearby cabinet, glancing over to monitor the industrial-sized pot of boiling pasta and two casseroles baking in the oven.

"I love you, sweetie."

Cody reached the top of the stairwell and crawled down the hallway to her room. She squeezed inside and shut the door behind her. Laying on a bed barely as long as her legs, she set her elbow on her desk and propped her feet on a chair. She opened her messages.

Cody felt a flutter in her chest. A chill ran up her spine. She put down her phone, closed her eyes, and waited

Originally Published November 13, 2018