like a leaf

December 25, 2013 § Leave a comment

i don’t think much about the scars on my arms anymore. i used to be very self conscious. i’d never wear sleeveless tops or even short sleeves that showed too much arm. if i saw anyone looking at my arm alarmedly i’d feel upset and ashamed. now i wear sleeveless shirts and don’t even think about whether anyone is looking or what they might be thinking. the scars have become just another part of my body, rather than something extraneous to or in excess of it.

so, it surprised me when my 3 year old daughter noticed for the first time that i have scars on my arms – slashes from self-inflicted razor cuts and two large, raised areas from burns. she pointed to the largest burned area and said, “what’s that?”

“it’s a scar,” i said.

“does it hurt you?” she asked.

“no.” i arranged thoughts in my head, thinking of how to explain answers to any further questions in terms she could understand.

but the only other comment she had was, “it looks like a leaf!”

i realized it did, and that this view of things had never before occurred to me.

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