Bruises and scars

We all have them. Bruises and scars, I mean. Not all are literal. Some bruises and scars are internal and hurt just as much. It’s not bad to have them. It shows you survived. You made it out to the other side when everything else had hit rock-bottom. Bruises and scars are a part of life. Some fade away with life. Others are there as constant reminders. Some only hurt if pressed. We’ve all had them. We all know the pain.

Recently, I saw a 16 week old baby with finger print bruises on her little body. Who did this to her? What’s her story? Who is to blame? Some bruises only grow with time. Her’s will. Maybe the physical bruises will go away. But we will know. She will know. She’ll grow up, knowing. She’ll grow up questioning. Why did this happen to me?

Some bruises and scars we accept as ‘occupational hazards’. I have a dog. I was bitten by him. I have a scar. I still love him. I went ice skating. I fell over. I got a cut on my finger and the scar from that is with me forever. I got hurt once. Emotionally. I’m not sure I’ll ever heal from that.

I met a 17 year old. He was having an existential crisis. ‘The world is so big. What can I even achieve here?’ His young life had been full of abuse and sorrow and pain. The bruises and scars from his childhood will keep re-visiting him like an unwanted guest.

Some bruises and scars remind us that we are alive. We are living. We are here. The scars from a depressed teenager who used to cut herself. The bruises of a man who got ‘beat-up’ in the street for being the wrong ‘type’. The hateful words that are forever etched in the mind of the kids as they watch their parents shout and scream.

All bruises and scars have a story. Most aren’t pleasant. Most are painful. All are important to acknowledge and remember.

What’s your story?