I recently shared with a co-worker how I injured (attacked is not the right word) by our neighbor’s dog when I was four years old that required about 60 stitches on two sides of my face and at least two surgeries to help minimize the reminders of that day. I have bits of reflection of that day and the moments that followed, that appear in my memory as quick snapshots, flickering as quickly to the forefront as they do when they leave. They only seem to last for about a second. I no longer feel the pain caused by Blue, but the scars will always be there, even if they are hardly noticeable to others. I usually point them out because they are not that clearly seen. We all have scars…some that are very visible…the one on my knee from sliding into a metal sprinkler head while playing tackle football with my brother…and others that no one sees. Some scars exist so deep that we didn’t even know that they were there. On this journey of mine, I have done some self-discovery and stumbled upon some scars I never knew existed and yet was forced to face and admit how they have affected me. To others, it may seem impossible to believe and other may invoke compassion for some of the pain that I had felt, but never allowed anyone to see. I dismissed it and just put up the strong face so no one ever saw me when I was vulnerable. Even alone, I didn’t allow myself to susceptible to tears or heartbreak. I just moved past it without really dealing with it. If we don’t talk about it or if we don’t see it, it doesn’t exist. Right? Because we can choose, we can allow the pain of the initial wound to continue to inflict ache on us forever or we can view the scars as reminders of the pain, but choose to stronger than the sting it once held. Admitting that we all have “baggage” and the scars that litter the facade we show the world is human. The pain that we have endured that no one ever saw for the blemishes inflicted upon us will define who we become. We can use those painful moments to hold us back and justify why we cannot move on and show the world that we are a product of our circumstances…OR…we can hold onto to flashes of tenderness and learn from them in such a way that we know who we want to be. Pain, heartbreak, and sorrow are always going to exist, but if we are open to the lesson learned from those times, then and only then, does the healing begin. Acknowledge the hurt you have suffered because no one has lived the perfect life, whether it be in childhood or as we grew up. Realize that those scars will always serve as tokens of where you have been, and will never be reminders of where you are going.
Michelle Homme 2012 ©