Blog Challenge Day 10: Embarrassing!
Day 10: Describe your most embarrassing moment.
I had a really hard time with this entry, not because I haven’t had a million embarrassing moments! I just could not think of one to blog about. Then something occurred to me. My most embarrassing moment isn’t necessarily an “incident” that occurred such as belching on a first date (thank goodness that has never happened to me)! Rather, it’s the way in which I learned a lesson.
I was back home (my other home) in Miami and had just begun working again after finally finishing chemo. I was just barely growing back my hair. I was skinny (not good skinny, but ugh skinny – people would ask if I had anorexia) and pale. A friend/co-worker invited me to her place for a holiday “trim the tree” party. I was looking forward to it and feeling a sense of normalcy doing something social.
I arrived and everything looked great! I sat at the dining table and then noticed I was seated next to HER. HER being a gorgeous woman. The kind who when you are feeling your most amazing can take the wind right out of your sails since you don’t feel you could ever measure up. She had perfect everything: skin, nails, teeth, hair, boobs, you name it. It was a reminder of how terrible I thought I looked. It was a reminder of the beating my body had taken. My scars. My diseases. I don’t know if I was jealous of her looks, her seemingly good health or what. I instantly didn’t like her. I immediately wrote her off as a ditz and hoped I could get out of having to spend a lot of time with her. I had imagined she couldn’t possibly know what it’s like to go through what I’d just endured.
Then the night went on. As everyone began to converse I learned she was actually a little older than she looked and, based on my assessment at the time, a lot smarter. I can’t remember how we touched upon this topic, but my lesson came. She told me about her family in Lebanon during the war. She told me about the violence and brutality she witnessed against her mother. She told me about her family praying at night that bombs wouldn’t hit their house. Her father and brother were killed. The rest of her family had to escape and they made their way to the United States.
There I was thinking, “People judge me based on my appearance all of the time. I am asked if I am anorexic, if I have AIDS, servers in restaurants don’t want to serve me, people asked why I shave my head and look what I’ve just done. I.AM.SUCH.AN.ASSHOLE.” I was embarrassed of myself. She turned out to be an amazing woman with whom I still keep in touch.
That was over fifteen years ago. That was one of the most embarrassing moments I’ve ever lived. I judged someone because she was too beautiful and because I was jealous. I judged an exquisitely written book by its cover.
Ironically, not long after that night I was eating out with my family. A man came into the restaurant with his family and as they were being seated he exclaimed, “I don’t want to sit next to her,” and pointed his finger straight at me. I was hurt. I was shocked. I was dumbfounded.
As we left the restaurant I walked up to his table and said, “I have cancer. I’ve just completed twelve rounds of chemotherapy. I hope someday you and the people you love never have to know what this is like, but even moreso, I hope you never have to know the pain of the cruelty you’ve just inflicted upon me over something beyond your control.” Then I left. Embarrassed for someone else this time.