How many of you have ever been a little clumsy, fell down and scraped your knee? Or wasn't paying attention when reaching into the stove to pull out your casserole and nicked your arm?
I lost count of how many self-inflicted scars I have scattered all over from the top of my head down to the bottom of my flat feet. When injured, I never hesitated to properly treat the wound. Before I used anything to cover it up, I first had to clean it out with antiseptic. Then, as I winced, dabbed some Neosporin to sooth the pain and speed up the healing process. Last but not least, I dressed it with gauze or a band aid. At the time of the injury, I didn't think of the mark it would leave. I just wanted the throbbing to subside and for the wound to get better so it wouldn't get infected. After a few days, I was able to remove the band aid. Even though the mark was there, it had faded to where I barely noticed.
Although I was never self-conscious about my scars, I know that there are people who will go the extra mile to cover it with makeup or even dress differently. None the less, that mark becomes a permanent scar on our outward appearance. Many of us have suffered deep gashes to our heart or spirit. It jolts us like an earthquake and knocks us off our feet. Emotions take over and we scramble to figure out what to do next. If we stop and take the time to nurture our inside wounds like we do the ones on the outside, then we will be alright. When properly treated, I consider these intimate marks, our beauty scars of survival.
There were a series of events throughout my life that shook me to the core. Low self-esteem, depression, and loneliness made themselves comfortable and at home. It took me to a dark place and tested my will to see the light of day. But if it weren't for God throwing me a life preserver, wrapping me in His grace and mercy, I can only imagine how my life would have ended up. Always on time, God allowed the right person to cross my path at the very moment I needed. They were able to pick me up and guide me to the right resources so I could get back on track.
I haven’t gone through anything different than what most people have. I can imagine there is someone else out there who has experienced financial hardships, a broken heart, death of loved ones, abuse, discrimination, bullying and so on. I am grateful I reached out and held on to God’s life preserver. I never gave up, kept my head above water and to Satan's surprise, I didn't drown. I realized that in order to move forward, I must heal from within. It was a slow and uncomfortable process but it was essential to open up and use my internal first aid kit. That kit was stocked with God’s word, my church, loving friends and family, Mary J. Blige music, Iyanla Vanzant and T.D. Jakes to name a few!
Although I am a work in progress, it has only been the last seven years or less where I have gotten to the point of loving and accepting me just for who I am. I now have the courage to share and expose those past symbols of hurt. They represent my journey and are a verbal as well as visual testimony of proof. I am on a steady path of self-awareness, improvement and growth. Embracing my beauty scars have allowed my current relationships to benefit. I gained strength and wisdom through the storm. So if and when my foundation gets rocked again, I know how to attend to my injuries better. Because I am a survivor!!