Is it better to have loved and lost…?

blog Mar 23, 2012

Last Friday I had a hang nail on my left toe.

(TMI, I know, but there’s a point.)

My dad ripped it off and it started bleeding.

When I’m not in my wheelchair, I maneuver around my bedroom and living room on my knees. Unfortunately, this injured toe does not allow me to do so. In fact, on Sunday it took me ten minutes just to get to the bathroom. Needless to say, I can’t wait for my toe to get better.

The story is about more than my stupid owie. There’s a part of me that has no idea what it means NOT to be disabled. I can imagine and fantasize about not being disabled…and I do. I really don’t know what it’s like though. What I do know is what it’s like to crawl without a bum toe and I miss it.

I’ve been asked a few times whether I would rather have been disabled by accident later in life or be the way I am and disabled from birth. Every time I have an owie like the one I currently have on my toe, the question always comes up, which prompts me in response to always think about the famous Tennyson quote “It’s better to have loved and lost than never have loved before.”

In this instance, my personal bent on this saying is that it’s better to have experienced life as a non-disabled person than never to have experienced it at all.

Complicated, I know.

On the other hand, I know how OCD I can get. I get really OCD. Right now, my daydreams are based on assumptions that are very sexy. But what if I had actual memories of driving a car, playing basketball with friends, and/or chatting up a girl in a bar?

The bottom line is, are dreams more powerful or are they taking away life memories? No matter what, I can’t help but going back to that Tennyson quote.

It’s better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.

Then again, I am obsessing over a hang nail that will heal very soon. It hasn’t impacted my life that badly. I don’t know how I would react if everything was taken away from me at once. Yes, I say better to love and lost than never loved at all. Perhaps that is my romantic side talking.

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