The Big Secret

(still not quite out loud)


I got high at the dentist once.

There was fear in me about getting a cavity filled. Laughing gas was supposed to soothe me.

But my body is weird. The regular dosage of that kind of stuff either is not enough or too much.

So, I sat in the chair getting high, waiting for the procedure to begin.

I was hoping for a soothing, gentle space with absolute trust in the people that were taking care of me, despite my fear.

I wished for someone to hold my hand.

Something ran through my head and I laughed.

It was even funnier trying to laugh with all that plastic and metal in my mouth. I spit a little but I didn’t care.

In that laughter, I relaxed.

And once I was relaxed, I sat back and watched life like it was a movie.

The weirdest thing happened. I must have been more high than I realized, because I started to imagine conversations.

Like, one of the hygienists was disappointed in me because I was a smoker. She couldn’t make sense of why she should put her hard work into my mouth when I would just go and fuck it up again.

And then I imagined a response to that disappointment. Like, she’s trying her best. (Ya, whatever) no really, she is, and she will quit smoking soon (I’m so sure, that’s what they all say) She won’t quit right away, she’ll struggle for a while, but she’ll quit.

I imagined a conversation with my fear, too. They will be gentle. (Are you sure) yes (how do you know) we will be here, we’re always here.

And the conversations went on and on like that.

Like a loving gentle person was guiding each person in the room through each doubt and fear that came up.

Automatic response.

And I remember thinking, that sounds like me. I’ve heard that before. This is home. This is where I belong.

(I was the girl who asked every stranger I past on the street how I could help – not out loud of course.)

It’s becoming somewhat of a trend now, I’ve heard, knowing this secret.

Though nobody likes to bring it up in mixed company.

The understanding and appreciating and loving this complex relationship, well, that’s something that can never be rendered to a trend.

I am that love. I remember feeling like everything made sense in that moment.

And then I lost it when the cavity was filled and they took off the mask.

It’s gone. But I remember. It’s a memory I’ll never stop trying to turn into a reality.

Maybe I’ll never get there. It’s not in me to stop trying, though, so the pain that I endure in this gulf will be.

Author: tendrilwise

Hi, I have a diploma in Journalism, I've published a novel, and I am currently studying psychology. My odd way of viewing the world either gets me kicked out of parties or invited to them. Jenn McKay

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