Sunday, June 6, 2010


Try as I might to be healed and renewed, past hurts and trials behind me, it is undeniable that I have come through to the other side of heart break incredibly, terribly scarred.

I've got scars, big scars, painful and tender scars, all over my heart and mind, even my soul.

And I want to be normal, because don't we all just want to be normal, and I want to pretend I never hurt at all and that life has always been good to me, but I can't because sometimes the first thing you'll see when you look at me are my scars.

I'm trying to heal my life. I'm trying to push forward leaving the tragedies and heart aches and battles I fought behind me, I'm pursing emotional and spiritual health because it feels good, but I can't pretend the scars aren't there. And just like physical scars, they're permanent. My pursuits to overcome might lessen the severity of the scar, it might even ease the pain, and make them more palatable, but they will still be there.

The thing about scars that makes them more then an unsightly reminder of your falls in life, is that they tell a story. They tell your story. They testify on your behalf that you have lived. Really lived. You've battled and fallen and been assaulted by life. They demonstrate the complexities and the intricacies of you, and they prompt onlookers to question their thoughts on you. Scars make the world wonder how you got them. They're intriguing. We're interested in each others pain, and the stories behind them, and we're comforted in knowing that everyone has them. Everyone.

As much as I wish I never fell, my scars show the world I got back up (and in some cases fell right back down). It's as though every stage of life has left it's mark. My freshest and most painful scars are recent, and still throbbing on a daily basis, they're the hardest to ignore and even more impossible to conceal from the world.

Sometimes I want the people in my life to see me, and think "Isn't she lucky, she's got it all together, great marriage, a bunch of healthy thriving kids, she's really got it good!" But, in truth, they don't. People in our family and our social circle look at me and they immediately see those giant, red, throbbing horrible scars of recent years. They see the pain on my face and the effect that loss has had on my body. They see the tired and the worn out look on my face and they know I've been through a battle or two. They know I'm scarred. They know my life isn't perfect, and worst still, they know my efforts to pretend otherwise are just a show. I might fool strangers, but only for a while, but once we get talking those scars just unveil themselves without my consent, it happens all the time.

But lately, I'm more concerned with the scars that only I can see. They bother me the most, the ones that no one knows are there. They remind me of the significance of what I went through in my marriage. They remind me of exactly how bad it was, of how badly broken we were and of how close we came to losing it all. They show me how it changed me, to have my marriage come so close to raveling completely, they show me how I'm not the same woman I was before, and I hate them. These are scars that I wish I never had. Because I never wanted to change like this. I hate that I am so pained by these scars. I hate that I don't trust like I used to. I hate that I can't stand the band Pearl Jam anymore, or anything that represents my husbands independence from our marriage, and from me. I hate being reminded that we were over. These scars are the very worst thing that ever happened to me, because they made me question me, and my value, in a way that losing Everett never did. My baby didn't leave me, he was taken, he had no say in the matter, and neither did I, it had nothing to do with my value, and though it hurts to have him gone, and he left a scar as well, it doesn't hurt in the same way my marriage scars do.

But like I said, scars tell your story. They show the world you fell and got up. My scars, all my scars, show what I've endured and survived. They give me dimension. They make me interesting to the world. My baby died, I fell, and I got up, the scar remains. My marriage crumbled, I crumbled too, and God picked us up and put us back together, we're healing, but the scar remains. I went through hell on earth, twice, and lived to tell about it. My scars can testify to the strength and courage God has given me, they testify to the hardships He carried me through. They're ugly but they're true, and they are a part of me now, unchangeable and undeniable. Scars are a fact of life, and when you try and conceal them from yourself and the world, they become secrets, obvious something's you're trying to hide, you never fool anyone, not even yourself.

It's natural I think, once scarred, to try your best to never fall like that again, to avoid at all costs, another painful scar. But this just gives power to the scars, to the fear, and certainly empowers you no further. Living life afraid of scars isn't living, but cowering in a safe place watching life pass you by, you won't get any scars that way, but you'll wither away in the process.

I'm trying to heal, my heart and my mind and my soul. I'm trying to live my life with vibrancy in spite of all the times I've fallen and all the hurts I've felt. I'm trying to rebuild everything life broke on me, and I'm trying to be fearless in love. I've come up against the same obstacle again and again, the fear of another scar, another ugly mark on my life, and it's slowed me down, or in some cases, completely stopped me from living and loving freely. But now that I've realized the scars ARE life, I can throw myself back into it, with trust and faith and incredibly energy and love and know that falling down, and getting up, and the resulting scars, are the point of it all, not a negative side effect or a worst case scenario. The scars ARE life. They show I've lived and I'm living, they show that life knocked me down and beat me up, and instead of laying their and giving up, giving in, I got back up.

Bring on life, bring on the scars, no matter the fall, I intend to get back up.



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