Despite the fact that since deciding to have this operation and becoming much more open about my leg, I still experience a level of difficulty when talking about it. I’m not sure if there is still a level of shame attached to my leg or just that sometimes it just feels easier not to bring it up at all, to simply leave it as a non-issue.
For example the other weekend at Splendour in the Grass I was sharing a room with a girl from work. I hadn’t met this girl before so she had no idea about my leg. I normally take my leg off to sleep but I felt weird about just whipping it off in front of her but bringing up a conversation about it felt even more awkward. I stood frozen by my bed unsure of what to do.
In the end I decided it might simply just be easier to put up with a little discomfort and sleep with it on under the covers.
This feeling of shame is something that I realize I really need to work on. I always knew it was there at the corner of my mind but it’s only now that I realize how much it impacts upon my life.
It was only the other night I was having a discussion about boys with Flatmate 1. He was telling me I should finally man-up (so to speak) and tell the boy I had been crushing on for months how I felt.
I told him I was really unsure how the boy felt towards me and I didn’t want to ruin the friendship if he didn’t feel the same way. I didn’t want things to change between us and I would be devastated if they became awkward or worse we stopped speaking.
All these things were true but what I didn’t dare voice aloud was what I knew was at the root of my nervousness about confessing my feelings.
I guess the underlying fear was that I would never be good enough for this boy. Could he possibly love me looking like I did? Would any boy?
I can’t blame S entirely for feeling like this but his rejection and disrespectful comment those years ago certainly keeps this fear and worry fresh in my mind.
But if I can’t love and accept my own body, how on earth can I ever expect anyone else to?