The Day I Chose to Smile

It was only half a tooth. But it was half of my front tooth, and it had broken off completely.

When I looked in the mirror, a shocked and snaggle-toothed woman stared back at me. I numbly finished combing my hair and walked downstairs to where my weekend hostess had breakfast waiting. In the quiet of her beautiful, Victorian, seaside home, I burst into tears.

My looming fear was that my tooth could never be fixed or that we couldn’t afford to replace it and I’d always look that way. Then a secondary dread emerged: I had to speak to hundreds of women for an entire day, AND a videographer had already been procured to capture my lectures on film!

I had become Exhibit A of brokenness on display for all the world to see.

It’s in moments like that when all the insecurity and vulnerability of even the most seasoned, professional speaker can kick in. First, I deliberated on opening with an elaborate funny story of “what happened on my way to the women’s conference.” Then, I considered using it as an illustration for my third presentation, entitled — are you ready? — “Brokenness.”

But I wasn’t feeling especially jovial, and I realized immediately that a broken front tooth was hardly a blip for so many people who were truly suffering and broken. So, I finally chose the third path…

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under the mercy, Lucinda

“Helping You Choose a Life of Serenity and Strength”

©2018 Lucinda Secrest McDowell        

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