This might be the week when, if I were to take off my sunglasses for a moment and give people five minutes of uninterrupted eye contact, no one would mess with me. I mean, a tattooed chick with multiple piercings… and a black eye, is that someone you really want to cross?
I’ll try to start from the beginning-ish…
We’ve had an unprecedented amount of sunshine in Oregon these past few days, including record-setting temperatures. It’s been the cause of much rejoicing, and I’ve tried to take full advantage of basking in the beautiful weather. Timing-wise, the sun could not have come at a better time for me, either. Not only is it something that naturally brings me happiness, but it necessitates wearing sunglasses, which I’ve hardly taken off this week. Including indoors, at grocery stores, in classrooms… (on the rare occasion I actually went out)
See, this week I’ve been a bit reclusive, hiding from the world outside my home. Call it pride, call it vanity, call it whatever you want, I thought it was necessary.
I have my very first black eye, and I’m not a huge fan of it at this point.
I wish it was caused by something that could be told as a tale of valor. How, in an effort to vanquish a foe while attempting to defend the indefensible, I received a bruising, yet still managed to have victory.
I wish it was a story of a time I did something really klutzy, which would be far more believable. I mean, accident prone seems to be my thing these days.
I’d love to say it was caused by me trying to do some idiotic stunt on my kickbike in an effort to prove I’m both youthful and fearless.
Ideally, I’d like to say I finally decided to give roller derby a legitimate try, the black eye being the result of my first attempt. (“You think I look bad, you should see my opponent!” I would’ve proudly boasted to all within earshot.)
But I’d be a liar if I stated any of these ideas as facts, dangit. In truth, the story is really lame, nothing preventable and quite pathetic.
I got an infection in my eye, was prescribed meds for it which eventually caused more problems, including the ability to bruise easily. The black eye that I woke up with yesterday is probably, in fact, self-inflicted. (Actually, that’s quite funny to admit.) It probably happened due to me rubbing my miserable eye in my sleep.
I’d really like to whine about my misery right now. I’d really appreciate lots of sympathy, maybe some get well cards and free coffee to help ease the pain of feeling like a monster. Every time I look in the mirror, I can’t help but reflect (ha!) on the episode of Seinfeld when Kramer realizes how much his appearance has changed…
As I’ve hidden behind my sunglasses, embarrassed by the rainbow of colors that have been unintentionally applied to my eyelid (unlike typical days when I purposefully color my eyelids blues, purples and greens…), I’ve spent time contemplating what I typically hide behind. I’ve been able to keep my guard up this week, remain less vulnerable and keep my distance from people far easier than usual, all because of my eye. And that fact hasn’t bothered me as much as it should have.
I should care that I’m less social, less forward. I shouldn’t desire to shirk away from being social, delighting in anonymity. I shouldn’t be happy to have what I consider a legitimate excuse to not go in the store or run errands. But if I’m honest I’ll admit, as much as I dislike the actual discomfort of this malady, I haven’t minded the excuse to become a temporary hermit. I’ve found comfort in being able to hide behind something, and not stand tall as the person I know myself to typically be.
I think the roller-derby-desiring side of my personality needs to kick my sunglasses-wearing self to the curb.
I’ve come to realize that I desire too often to hide behind what I shouldn’t. I can’t help but acknowledge that I often try to hide me, who I really am, from the people around me. That needs to change.
Apologies to all for trying to keep my distance. I’ve determined to break this pattern starting now. This afternoon I will choose to leave my house, with my guard down, and my colorful eyelid visible.
As the rain has officially returned to Oregon, it’s been decided that my need for sunglasses has utterly been dissolved… (Though my need for maintaining a bit of pride hasn’t, please people, no pictures!)
What do you find yourself hiding behind? What story would you concoct, if you found yourself with an unexpected black eye?