“When unrequited love is the most expensive thing on the menu, sometimes you settle for the daily special.”
― Miranda Kenneally
A piece of a tooth broke loose today. I am reminded that at the moment I have no real health insurance and while distressing, the tooth doesn't have any real pain associated with the loss of the piece. I attribute the ache in my jaw with clenching my teeth and worrying at what is left. I was not meant to have a mouth full of perfect teeth. Maybe if in my youth I'd have taken better care, maybe if with my first pregnancy I had realized how completely the baby takes everything it needs first, maybe if I had stayed in a relationship built in failure, but rot with health benefits maybe then I would have been blessed with pearly whites that flash against the dark of the not so perfect life I would have been privy to. Pretty teeth, but a very awful existence. Not for me. Not for my children.
This is not the first broken tooth I have ever had and I am fairly sure it won't be the last, and teeth are not the only broken things that have laced my life. As humans we all have the luxury of being flawed. Some will attempt to fix those visible flaws, give the appearance of perfection or physical flawless but it's a kind of band-aid. If looked at in the right light the flaw can still be seen. Some flaws are acquired like debt. Like memory. Like regret. My teeth are flawed but it's my heart I worry about.
Is it possible that denying myself love when it was first presented has doomed me to never have it? I don't want to believe that but there are days when the notion slaps at me and well, it gets my attention. I do not believe that I am in love now, but the idea that I could one day be intrigues and terrifies. I am not so much terrified of being in love but I am truly terrified of being rejected. So my usual tactic is to cleverly, I think I'm being cleaver, run from it. Not in a fast paced, heavy breathing kind of way but more a pretend I don't feel and am not bothered, or hurt but responses or lack of response to any expression of interest or affections I offer. A flaw. This has never worked in the past and I don't disillusion myself by thinking it will happen for the twentieth time, it won't, I know this, but still. I am human and to deny that wanting would create yet another flaw and I am all flawed up right now. No need to keep piling them on when I have a stockpile already.
My son, who struggles with my sexuality, has lately taken to asking me if I am happy several times a day when we are together. So my veneer has cracked and I am no longer capable of keeping the lonely out of my eyes. Another flaw. Seems I'm chock full of them these days. I know it is unrealistic to think that the children I have raised will not pick up on my moods, I mean I raised them to feel, not a flaw. The lonely can be taken care of. And who knows in the pursuit of chasing away lonely I might run into a heart that wants to run into my heart. Maybe, maybe not. I haven't tried because I think I know what I want. But I don't have a great track record of getting what I want so maybe the additional flaw is that I really have no idea what I want. So I will assuage my lonely with the soft skin of another who wants nothing from me, which seems appropriate since I don't seem to know what I want for myself.
This feeling of inadequate, I don't consider a flaw. I am human, and humans all over the globe have felt this feeling. I do worry that I'll get stuck here and lose pieces of my heart but unlike the broken tooth, more breaking of my already flawed and broken heart will be pain I can't ignore and no amount of healthcare can fix that. especially since I don't have any healthcare right now.