I’ve got this gap between my front teeth. I hate it.
A couple years ago, I was talking with some friends of mine about how much I hate seeing pictures of myself. Among the reasons for this aversion? That horrible, horrible gap.
See, when I was a kid, I had braces, and they fixed the gap, but then when my wisdom teeth came out, I guess my teeth spread apart some and now I have this gap between my teeth again. For a long time, I wouldn’t even smile with my lips open, because of that gap, but then several people told me I have a great smile so I have tried to get over it, but still, whenever I see one of these, pics, all I can see is that gap and…
That’s when one of my friends broke in on my story and said, “I’ve never noticed it.”
And I thought, “How many other people would never have even noticed this horrible, horrible flaw of mine if I’d just never told them about it?”
I was reminded of this when the three brothers on my favorite podcast (My Brother, My Brother, and Me (MBMBaM)) did a TV show for Seeso TV.
The oldest brother, Justin, talks frequently about being overweight. He makes comments like “I’m living my life as an overweight man.” He talks about not being able to find clothes that look good – how his jeans are always cuffed because he can’t find jeans that are short enough for his chubby legs.
I do this too. As a podcaster, a writer, a blogger – non-visual mediums – I find that I will start stories much the same way when I want to talk about trying to find clothes that make me feel good about myself, or challenges finding a date, or the like.
I saw the first episode of the MBMBaM show. Now, don’t get me wrong. Justin is overweight, he’s not one of those totally average people complaining about how fat they are. But his weight is not his most defining characteristic. It’s not the first thing I notice when I see him. In fact, the first thing I thought was “Why does he talk about his weight so much?” And this is coming from someone who’s overweight!
So, I don’t have a great insight here, really. Sometimes, like if I want to talk about having a hard time finding clothes, I’ve got to mention that I’m overweight, or you’re going to wonder “Why doesn’t she just go to the GAP?”
Which brings me back to the lesson I learned a few years ago about the gap in my teeth.
Maybe we should all spend a little less time pointing out our flaws to other people, because maybe we’re the only ones who noticed them in the first place.