” Nous sommes nos cicatrices ” We are our scars…

“I’d never want to fully erase what makes me me.”  I read this sentence recently and realized the writer truly expressed, albeit briefly, what I have been blogging about for the last 13 years…I neither speak French nor read it, but she shared this phrase that spoke to me and I love the truth of it, …Nous sommes nos cicatricesI have many scars, countless really if you added them all up as I am now a 53 year old woman.  Many scars, most probably, are because of terrible decision making on my part, several are indeed from unfortunate events, a few, thank goodness,  from the hand of another…  2020 seems to have scarred many people in many different ways and some of those scars are so deep they will become wounds that never heal…regardless of the scar; emotional, financial, physical, we own them forever and it sometimes can take more than our lifetime allows to heal them, but we all still try, don’t we?  To heal…

I know many scarred people.  I know many scarred people who have deeper scars than I do.  The depth of their wounds does not diminish the pain of mine, and the lightness of mine does not make theirs any worse, we can’t compare pain and suffering really, it’s too subjective.  What hurts my boyfriend is not what hurts me.  What hurts my mother or my sister or my daughter is not necessarily what hurts me, but all of our scars and pain are valid and they shape, like it or not, the person we ARE, and too often, the person we spend our life trying to get away from or not to be.  Some people wear masks and costumes to hide them…the flawless diamond wedding band and the big house with the wrap around porch and the shiny Jaguar in the driveway and the Louboutin heels in the walk-in-closet can be good cover for a crappy marriage to a cheating husband who is a jerk and a liar …the jacked up truck loaded with flags and bumper stickers, oh “don’t tread on me” can be a cover up for feelings leftover from a verbally abusive and emasculating father…masks come in many forms.   “Masks” are like a band-aid, & the wound is still there and the scar will never go away…but people still try.

I feel like in this new year ahead, knowing full well that so many people are suffering, it is as good a time as any to give our own selves a break.  It feels awful to think this, “well look at his life, gosh mine doesn’t seem so bad now”  however, when it is time to go easy on yourself, sometimes that sort of compare and contrast is needed.  Come to terms with the scars we have, accept that everybody we know has them too, and be okay with all of them.  They have formed us over time to be THE PEOPLE WE NOW ARE.  If you are happy with yourself, your choices, your behaviors, your beliefs and ideologies by all means, keep doing what you are doing, but if like many of us, there are things you do not like about your self, your person, or your life, well, what better time than a new year to make the changes that you wish to make. 

There are children suffering so terribly right now that I can’t even think too hard about it without crying…there are families terrified right this second that because they have not been able to pay their rent for months on end they are about to be planning to live in their car, and there are families right now who have been fighting and arguing over money every day for nine months now that their kids can’t remember the last time anybody laughed or smiled…there is so much that is amiss in the country around us that if you have the good fortune to be employed, housed, fed, and secure in your life, you should not be thinking about any of your scars right now at all…you should be just feeling lucky and happy and try as hard as you can to spread those positive feelings because I swear there is somebody who needs them desperately.  Yes, we are our scars, but we are also our healing, and if you are not suffering right now I beg of you to spread some joy and some light and some peace, in any way that you can, because it spreads and it grows and there are people all around whose scars are making their lives so terribly dark, your little ray of light might truly make a difference, how ever so small, and help them to heal…

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