She lay in bed, staring up at the ceiling. Through the darkness, she listened to the sounds of life in the house. Her parents watching television a few rooms away, her brother laughing downstairs, the washing machine chugging through the mountains of clothes her family seemed to go through every day. Such a waste of water and electricity. She should try to wash fewer items every week to compensate. It was always up to her to compensate. No wonder she got so tired, trying to single-handedly make up for the sins of the rest of mankind. She knew it was an irrational compulsion, but she couldn't stop herself from thinking it was her obligation.
She hated sleeping on her back, but it was the only comfortable position this night. She sighed and shifted slightly, wincing. Her legs felt as if they’d been rubbed with a cheese grater. Well, in a way she supposed they had. She thought again about what she would have to do in the coming week to atone for all the waste she saw every day. She'd already limited herself to one meal a day, not including the cup or two of coffee first thing in the morning. Next would be doing less laundry. Then ... she wasn't sure. What else could go before people started thinking her strange? Or worse, ill? She'd heard in the psychology classes she'd been taking at college that people with mental illnesses were apt to neglect their personal hygiene. So she couldn't shower less, or wash her hair less to save water. People might mistake her for someone with a problem.