Physical scars do not stay for long on my body. I’m not entirely sure why, if it’s my skin type or colouring or something, but any reminders of pain just fade into my pale, freckled casing, out of sight, out of mind.
Not that I’ve tried hard to scar myself. No blade piercing skin, no flickering flame or red raw burns to speak of, rather the impermanent red trails of blunted nails, not sharp enough to draw blood, but enough to ground me back to earth, when the worry and anxiety take control.
Waiting it out doesn’t always work; like the flu, the thoughts often get worse before they can get better and the symptoms are repellant to my overactive imagination.
The physical scars I remember getting were always accidents, a falling iron, 3 hours in sunny Wales with no sun cream on (honestly, who gets sunburned in Wales in March?) or a Dental mistake, gaping hole in my mouth the reminder of the pain of infection.
The emotional scars last longer than physical ones, flashing thoughts that make the way for disappointment and might-have-beens. Friends lost contact, gliding into my life and tip toe-ing out, breaking through force-fields and concrete bunkers with no damage to themselves. The death of a loved one, no longer raw and bleeding, but the dull ache of stiches and bruising.
Worse, other people’s scars, now my burden, my secret to carry and hide, like a needle puncturing me from inside out. People I love, who have tried permanent reminders of pain, liking it enough to scar me with the fear they did not feel, covering themselves with white tally lines, burning me with their looks. I wished my skin did scar, so I was left with the reminders instead of them.