For those who know me and not just in a work or acquaintance scenario will know i have a few physical scars. The first is on my head from a childhood injury. This is a bit of story but hard to see unless my hair is cut really short. The second are on both of my shins, something I got as an adult. These are the results of 2 bouts with staph infections. Apparently I am very apt to get it, and on my shins where there is very little blood flow they seem to flourish.
There were incredibly painful when I got them, and in many cases the original diagnosis was wrong. Which probably didn’t help matters, strange both happen to hamper vacations. The scars look bad, and often i think the infection is going to come back as they do not look healed.
Well for some reason I am self conscious about the scars. I prefer to wear pants over shorts, and if I wear shorts i wear socks. Even places where i need to put a bathing suit on, I think twice before doing. Now if I am comfortable with you, and or I know you have seen it before I don’t care as much. But in public settings, parties or places where I am not comfortable with showing my scars, I avoid doing so. Lucky at work I wear pants and no idea what i would do if it was wear shorts to work day.
Recently I have been wondering why. My wife Sheila had surgery on her stomach when she was a baby, and had a scar there she was very self conscious about. She always wanted plastic surgery to cover it up. When she wore bathing suits it was always on piece or one that covered her stomach. I knew her issue with it, never challenged her, never asked her to do anything different. I some how wonder if that self consciousness she had somehow subconsciously got into my head. That my scars are something that should not be seen.
We all have scars, some visible and some not. And these scars are signs of survival. Signs that we faced a challenge and made it thru. Some people have less, smaller, some have more and larger. Some are in hidden spots and some are right out in the open. Those who scars run deep (not physical) are only exposed when something happens or someone asks a probing question. Some like mine can be hidden with some work, others cannot. For those who don’t have a choice, they live with it, live with someone looking, some staring, and some wondering what happened.
Mine are in a interesting spot. I have the ability to hide them in most settings, but can also hide them almost all times. Previously I have chose to. I am making the mental decision today not to do it anymore. I should realize my life although has been easy at some parts, been challenging during others. I struggled with some things which my mom used the expression “temporary inconvenience” or “minor hurdle.” No matter how difficult it really was, there was nothing too hard.
My wife used the expression “We got this…” This is the first thing my daughter said when she realized her mom had passed away. The scar of losing her mom will be hidden but there. That scar is one that has also healed as best it can, and only when people have dug deep do they see it. But we have survived that, I have survived other difficult challenges – physical, emotional and mental. But guess what I am still standing, you are still standing. If someone asks you how you got the scar, you can be open and let them know. I intend not to cover mine up, I have healed physically, and have healed mentally (and in both cases got help). Don’t let your scars define you, let them be be like notches on your bed post, signs of victory.
This opinion is mine, and mine only, my current or former employers have nothing to do with it. I do not write for any financial gain, I do not take advertising and any product company listed was not done for payment. But if you do like what I write you can donate to the charity I support (with my wife who passed away in 2017) Morgan Stanley’s Children’s Hospital or donate to your favorite charity. I pay to host my site out of my own pocket, my intention is to keep it free. I do read all feedback, I mostly wont post any of them
This Blog is a labor of love, and was originally going to be a book. With the advent of being able to publish yourself on the web I chose this path. I will write many of these and not worry too much about grammar or spelling (I will try to come back later and fix it) but focus on content. I apologize in advance for my ADD as often topics may flip. I hope one day to turn this into a book and or a podcast, but for now it will remain a blog.