My birth was a disaster in so many ways. The doctor, in a rush to free me from the restricting force of my mother’s uterus, damaged nerves pulling me out. My limbs are useless on my left side, but I’ve learned to get around and have adapted ways to care for myself.
It’s not the inability to move normally that bothers me though…
My face droops. It’s like looking into a fun house mirror when I look at myself. One side is perfection; flawless skin, cute nose, bright blue eye, and plump lips that form a gorgeous smile. The other side? Like a picture warped by heat, like a wax mold melted by a candle, like a perfect doll distorted by fire.
My speech comes out in slurred syllables that people have to strain to hear. I feel like my speech; so hard to understand that people turn away before they fully get me.
Mom hovers over me. I’m twenty-two years old, but she treats me like I’m a fragile vase perched on the edge of the counter. Too much movement and I’ll shatter the moment I hit the ground. The huge settlement with the hospital means we live comfortably, extravagantly, if I’m honest. I could’ve gone to a good college, but mom put up such a fuss that I put it off. And then I just kept putting it off because that nagging voice in the back of my mind can’t help wondering if she’s right. Maybe I can’t be on my own, maybe I can’t take care of myself, maybe this whole thing is a big mistake. Maybe?
Dating isn’t an option for me either. I’ve seen the way guys look at me. Their faces always twist up before they can school their features, and that’s the nice ones. I’ve had more men laugh at me than I can count.
To be trapped in this body that doesn’t work is torture. One half of me is whole and the other half is this twisted mess that’ll never work right. I stopped being a person the moment they yanked me from my mother’s body.
I’m a broken piece. It doesn’t matter how beautiful the one half of me is, my melted features define me. I am that girl. That girl people pity or baby, but never love like a whole person.