The reporters who had hung around my family since the day I was born had always called me a 'special baby.' But I never felt special, just cursed.
I was born with a rare genetic condition. Forget one in a million, try one in a billion. Most who have it don't survive long.
A problem with my lachrimal glands means my tears are extremely acidic. Any skin contact with my tears is disastrous. There is no cure.
When I was two I threw a huge tantrum because I didn't want to leave the park. I ran off to hide in the bushes before my mother could wipe my tears away.
When she finally found me, my skin was a mess of blood and blisters. I still have the scars from that day, furrows of ugly purple flesh running down my cheeks.
I didn't throw any tantrums after that.
When I was five I started seeing a therapist. Most people go to therapists to let it all out, but his job was to teach me to keep it bottled up. Don't cry. Don't laugh too hard.
Stay away from soppy films.
This year I started seeing someone. My mum wasn't happy, knowing I'd get hurt, but I ignored her pleading. I loved him because he looked past my scars and my forced stoicism.
An hour ago he told me he was seeing someone else. I tried not to let it get to me, but the tears are flowing faster than I can stem them.
I sob as my mother pounds frantically on the locked door.
I let a piece of my cheek fall onto my blouse.