A few years ago, when I thought being upset about not yet being married should start in your early twenties, a friend told me that a great exercise would be to ‘manifest’ my destiny and challenge God by making a ‘wishlist’ of the sorts of things that I really desired in a husband. “Our God is so big and how cool would be be to look back after you’ve met your husband and see how your prayers were answered?”
“Honestly? At this point I just want a face and a pulse,” I replied, with all the world-weariness my 25 year old self could muster. But she challenged me, and I begrudgingly dreamed up Mr. Right in my coffee/wine/tear/Cheeto-finger stained diary.
I’m not going to embarrass myself in this post by listing what those secret desires of the heart were. I will save that for another post. But I will say that that list has evolved. For example, I am almost ready to give up “must be passionate about saving the bee population and into having a small but productive goat herd and chicken coop on our property.”
I’m willing to compromise on what used to be inspired choices for our imaginary children’s names – after teaching so long, so many names have been ruined for me. I now just want to name mine names that are easy to: yell out as I cheer for their manifold accomplishments, inevitably lose them in an amusement park, are easy to pronounce and remember, and don’t rhyme with any body parts.
My ‘ideal husband’ list has seen the most changes under “which career would I most desire for this mystical creature.” I used to be attracted to dreamers, musicians, artists, philosophers, etc. “Who cares about his career!” I thought. Because mainly I’m attracted to passion. The problem is that I am a dreamer, a creative, and have passionate opinions about things I might not even have an information about. Yep. Not even one information.
Being me means staying up till the wee hours every night with one idea and then a dozen more and 32 tabs open on six different screens and music playing and a glass of wine and five candles we all hope I remember to blow out before bed. I’m texting and posting everyone ever and I’m chronically late/broke/tired/silly/imagining a new business proposal. I’m walking emotion and ideas in mid-sentence. Therefore it doesn’t add up to any direction or stability or profit of any kind when I date one of my own. I figured that out the hard way.
So I have modified my qualifier for future husband in the realm of passions slash career – the answer is he needs to be a dentist or a mechanic.
Because at 33, I’m learning to be more practical and pragmatic, and many of my expensive and physical problems have stemmed from problems with my teeth or problems with my car.
I solved the latter by moving abroad and selling my car. Now driving kinda freaks me out and makes me generally annoying to be in a car with. But the first problem will haunt me all my life. I have a teeth condition with very little to no enamel. Also – fun fact – I am missing permanent teeth! I still have baby teeth! So I have constant issues. I actually got three root canals on the same tooth in Brazil, which was super fun. And might have had a bit more to do with the dentist I was seeing.
I’m home for a few months, so I decided to set some money on fire. I booked a dentist appointment and tried to psych myself up for it. But even for people with normal teeth, sitting in a never comfortable chair and having people hold open your mouth and peer into it and then bring their friends over to peer in is awkward.
The day before a dentist appointment, I always feel a sense of panic about what my face looks like up close. I prop up my mom’s super magnetic mirror and get manic with hair dye over the barely visible greys. I tweeze and prod and pluck at things that the human eye can’t even see, and decide I should probably just wax my entire face off and reapply selected features with paint. I floss more in that 24 hour period than I do in all six months before.
I get anxious for any kind of booger or nose hair, certain that the staff is going to laugh at me and tell all their friends over happy hour about the girl who dared to have allergies while getting her teeth examined. And without fail, I subconsciously self-sabotage my appointment by having food with raw onions and garlic the day before, as if the smell of my breath will be so obnoxious that the assistant will confer with my dentist and they will bring out some miracle product from the back that solves my tooth issue and sends me home pain free.
The morning of always involves some nervous diarrhea, as my intestines are very connected to my emotions, and I think my body is trying to force all functions in anticipation of having to spend several hours trapped in a chair.
All in all, it was a 4.5 hour appointment that left me bloody and light-headed. Luckily, Dr. Dan had Netflix on a tv screen on the ceiling, so I rewatched episodes of “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” in between gagging out “I’m okay” every thirty minutes over the drool and blood and the sounds and smell of my own bones being drilled away. And that mostly kept the tears at bay.
I spent the next week waking up with blood in my mouthguard and gums so swollen they covered the top halves of my teeth, which I was assured via email was “normal, just rinse with salt water.” But through the dark chasms of the internet I self-diagnosed with several ways I was going to die.
Gma brought over chinese corn soup and wine, because hey, liquid diet. Mom took me out to margaritas and mushy wet bcrs from Los Panchos. Everytime I eat Mexican food I wonder why I keep thinking I can live abroad. I spent a decent amount of time curled up with Netflix and bone broth. Ten days later, I feel almost normal, and just in time to go back to the dentist on Monday! Le sigh.
If you want some gross selfies, let me know. It is not for the weak, I promise you. If you want to bring me soup, I prefer it from Napa with an alcohol content of at least 13%.
In other news, I’ve watched the first two episodes of “The Bachelorette” and am really enjoying Rachel (it’s not just the name). She’s about the smartest woman they’ve had on the show, they FINALLY have some more representation with not only the lead but the contestants, and the boys on the show are providing enough dramatics at the moment that I don’t even miss the usual cat-fights from when it’s all females competing for one male. (I do miss the hair/make-up/dresses though.)
The real question is – what kind of single scene awaits me in Hong Kong? I have officially signed my contract for two years as an Admissions teacher for a school there, and while prematurely bummed about leaving the puppies and my family and friends again, I am thrilled to be going to Asia for the first time. To live. Without knowing a stitch about the language or culture or food or. No matter. Whatever happens, I’m sure it will make a great blog.
It’s a free way to say “I love you” and that’s the kind of currency I like to deal with.
If no one’s said it yet today and you need to hear it – floss.