“And one day, he’ll say to me, “Elphaba,
A girl who is so superior,
Shouldn’t a girl who’s so good inside
Have a matching exterior?
And since folks here to an absurd degree
Seem fixated on your verdigris.
Would it be all right by you
If I de-greenified you?”
And though of course,
That’s not important to me.
“All right, why not?” I’ll reply
Oh, what a pair we’ll be
The Wizard and I…” – The Wizard and I, Wicked
Pardon the gratuitous quoting, but I was thinking about this as I surfed through the various Moebius syndrome groups today… there’s such a fine line between “degreenifying” ourselves. We all do it… by surgery, by submitting to speech therapy way past the age it is considered “fun”, by thinking about how others view us… and the hard thing is that there’s usually no good answer. What is the answer for one person is not the same for another. I can give you a good idea of what I think, given my personal experiences… but who am I to say that anyone else with Moebius will have the same experiences? Of course, I can’t.
I see people so happy (well, not totally happy… you know what I mean) about upcoming surgeries and I can only pray that they and their children get what they want from it and it helps them. For me? Who knows. I was both too old and too traumatized to voluntarily do surgeries as a young teen, so I let that one slide by. Unless something drastically starts to sag or whatever, I think I’ll be surgery-less my whole life. But for me, with what I was born with and my personality, I think surgery and learning to live with the changes would probably have been more traumatic. So I’m content with the decision I made long ago.
And in a way that brings me back to the quote… by the end of the play, the characters all learn to put what they want and what they believe in perspective and to value what they have. I believe we can do both, support and encourage.