My mother tells me I have to eat breakfast or else the stomach acid will start to eat at me. Three generations of women avoiding breakfast— I remember my grandmother who wouldn’t eat from the time she woke each sunrise til late noon, up until the cancer spread through her stomach. She went to the hospital, but she’s dead now. My mother doesn’t talk about her much, only mentioning her vaguely as a threat of what happens to daughters who have to survive their mother at 18. A lesson learned of girls who don’t eat breakfast. But I can’t trust her. I never see her eat breakfast. She used to— a banh mi after school, cheesy pasta before skating lessons. Back when we ate together, almost happily, if not for the shared shame in our eyes after reaching for seconds. It is difficult not to think about my mother on her deathbed. Swept up in the white sheets with her sunshine yellow skin. I sit outside her hospital room and my head is in my hands. I wonder how I will react when she dies, as I press a hand into the emptiness of my rib cage, searching for a spine. There’s only gas there, from sucking in my stomach all the time.