I took my klutz status from amateur to professional in 1978. By the time I left college, I was ready for the Olympics (should a “Klutz” event ever present itself, I am certain to take the gold). I am covered in scars. But some carry more weight than others.
I have a small scar on my shin from when I fell onto my best friend’s grave. This morning in the shower, I managed to nick it with the razor. It made me think of other scars (all things come to me in the shower) and what they mean. In the past week, scars have come up a lot in conversation.
I have a tiny scar on the back of my left hand from Mother’s Day 1986. That was the day I met Skotchdopole and became a mother for the first time.
There’s a longer scar on my belly from the day I met Doofenshmirtz.
People I love have scars from accidents, surgeries, stabbings…
Everyone I know can point to scars on their body and tell you the when, the where, and the how. It’s so different than tattoos… we choose the time and the place and why we get them. Objects and words to remind us of something, or maybe just for decoration. Scars, on the other hand, are rarely by choice.
Sometimes, (often) the external scars are linked to internal ones. These are the ones people won’t always tell you about. If we are lucky, the scars on our heart never open back up.
As I watch the trickle of blood run down my shin, I am suddenly overwhelmed. I sat in a surgical waiting room last week. I lost a childhood friend yesterday. I have listened as my loved ones talk of painful relationships and beautiful self-discovery. I have touched the scars and I know the stories.
Sometimes the map of our lives can be traced with our fingertips