Scar woman: Facing Life’s battles

“How di right side ah yuh body suh chop up?”
I’ve always found it easier to make a joke out of my own situation or personal  flaws before someone else points it out and tries to ridicule me about it. I can be pretty sensitive about my appearance, although I try my best not to make it too obvious. I’m sure I’m not the only one, after all we are human, and we all possess some level of self consciousness within us. I just try my best to conceal them, some days I’m quite successful at doing so, while others days… not so much. I like people to see that I’m strong and I’m highly aware of all the physical flaws I have, so in order to mentally and emotionally prep my self for the glares, questions, and teasing, I simply beat everyone else to it by making my own comical relief about them. Before the accident, I had a few scars, that weren’t so obvious or bothersome to me because over the years I learned to accept each one. Ever since the accident, I’ve received more than I bargained for.I should be grateful for the scars, it’s either them or death. And honestly a much as I hate the scars I have, I’d choose them over an eternal nap in a 6 foot hole.
My new scars are all in places that I used to admire and show the most appraisal to: my stomach, my right eyebrow, and underneath my right eye. So when this was said of course in reference to the visible and apparent scars on the right side of my body. The scar on my upper right arm, one on my leg, and the newest additions to the scar collection includes the one on my stomach as well as the cut between my right eyebrow.
I often hear jokes or questions like this about my flaws. Honestly, I’m extremely self-conscious about each of my noticeable stitched scars. It’s bad enough I have to see them everyday and live with each one. I can’t really hide them in certain clothes. To be honest  I’ve stopped trying. I no longer see the significance of hiding what I’ve been through. We all have scars, it just so happens that mine are visible and easier to see. No one is perfect, and I will never be.
My scars do not define me. I won’t allow them to change me or hinder me from getting what or where I want. Scars aren’t the most attractive things to look at, but a person has to offer is so much more valuable than their appearance. I hate these scars. But, if it weren’t for them I doubt I would be the person I am today if I hadn’t endured these painful incidents. It sucks having to be the center of jokes, stared at like a wounded pitiful animal, or constantly being questioned.

I am not my scars.

We’re all mortal beings, which means the bodies we are in are only temporary, therefore we are expected to return it when our time is up. Words can be shallow and hurtful, but I believe my soul and personality are worth more, than attractive scar-less flesh. There was a point in my life I allowed fear and opinion of others to prohibit me from wearing any type of clothing that would reveal the slightest bit of my stitched scars. Not anymore.
The reaction I hear about my scars aren’t new or shocking. Those who are brave enough just stare at them, as if I can’t see their eyes beaming at my scar. They ask questions like:
How did that happen?
Does it hurt?
Did it hurt?
How many do you have?

Life happened. At that time it hurt, but no longer does. In total I have 5.

MESSAGE For Scarred Women:
Your wounds may be visible, never allow your wounds to damage your spirit. You are and will be amazing.

Signed with love,
A physically scarred young woman.

Butterfly Effect: Unexpected and unexplained occurrences

Today, I decided to take on the Butterfly effect challenge posted via The Daily Post. I never really understood the meaning of the Butterfly effect neither had I ever really put much thought into it. After reading one of the stories posted by a fellow blogger, I decided to share one of my own personal life experiences. So here it goes:

On August 20, 2014 I received a text from my cousin. She asked me if I was still going to accompany her  on her journey to one of the biggest and highly anticipated moments in her life, the start of College. Of course, I said sure. I knew how much it meant to her to finally go off on her own, after all I was once in her shoes. Back in ’11 when I began my new journey into Independence and adulthood, I was just as eager as she was. I was lucky enough to have my brothers and my mom send me off into the college world. My cousin and I have always been close so I felt honored when she  asked me to join her. Although I wanted to go I felt this strange feeling in the pit of my gut. That night I set my clothes out, comfortable traveling attire, hat, leggings, t-shirt, hoodie, and nikes. During my time as a college student, I’ve become all too familiar with the traveling lifestyle of a college student. I set my alarm for 6 am.

The morning of August 21, 2014, I was woken by my alarm.I checked my phone, I saw I had not  received any text messages from my cousin. However, I still kept my word. I brushed my teeth, took a shower, and got dressed. During this process my mother questioned me (as always) and I told her Aliesha (my cousin) asked me to join her on her 6-hour trip to school. My mother wasn’t pleased about this at all. As always, I prepared myself for the lecture and her angered looks. Don’t get it twisted people, my mom loves my cousin. I just think for some strange reason she had a nervous feeling. A mother’s intuition is usually spot on. In my usual efforts to prove her wrong, I assured her i would  be alright. There was no need for her worry, but of course my little  words of encouragement didn’t work. I told her I would call her when we arrived at the campus, hugged her, and left the apartment.

Now my mom’s superstitious feelings began to rub me the wrong way.Although I wanted to go, there was a small feeling in my gut that wasn’t too up for the ride. I wasn’t sure what it was or why I even had such a slight feeling. Maybe it was my intuition. Anyhow, I ignored this strange feeling and just brushed any negative thoughts off. I walked down to Aiiesha’s apartment, which took me less than 5 minutes, since she lives in a 2 block proximity to me. Funny, huh? We live so close to one another.  She packed the rest of the suitcases and her necessities in the car. The driver, Aliesha’s mother’s friend and I introduced our selves. Then shortly after all four of us women began our journey.

I was up for about 2 hours of the ride, but after we made a pit stop for gas. I drank some juice my cousin bought and fell into a deep sleep.

I woke up in the hospital, where I was surrounded by my family. I remember being woken by the sound of my father’s voice. I was heavily sedated so I was fortunate not to have felt the actual extreme pain I had acquired during the car accident. To me, I felt normal, but by the sight of everyone else’s face I had not looked the way I envisioned or felt. I asked about my cousins and the driver. I was told they were all doing well, but badly injured.

I was the only asleep. Therefore, I have no factual details on what or how this accident occurred,

For weeks, I was bed ridden.  Thankfully, I was able to move my toes. So that meant I was able to walk and possibly still able to DANCE. I had not suffered any trauma to my feet, abdomen, arms or neck. I felt very weak. I believe this was the weakest I had ever felt in my life. I later came to discover I suffered major head and facial injuries. I received facial fractures that damaged the right side of my face. My cheekbone was dislocated. The bones around my eyes and on my forehead had been crushed. This affected my right eye and caused it to be closed. Imagine not being able to see for weeks. It was horrible. You’re probably wondering, what happened to the left side of your face? It was great, a little swollen but nonetheless still perfectly functioning. The only issue I have, is that my left eye is much weaker than my right, Therefore, if my right eye isn’t functioning then my sight will not be at its full potential.

I was devastated but still thankful to be alive. I thanked God and still continue to show my gratitude for him sparing my life until this day. Unfortunately the other driver, who was a man had perished. God bless his soul.

During that low point and difficult time in my life, I realized who is really there for me. I know that I am loved by these people who didn’t hesitate to come to my side. I constantly question why did this happen? what have we done to deserve this? What if I had listened?

The Butterfly effect: Maybe if I had listened to my mom. I would be at Daemen, almost completing my journey as a fourth year college student. I would’ve went back on my word to my cousin, she would’ve been temporarily angry but far long forgiven me for it. Maybe if I had listened to my mom, I would be interning, stressing at school, and living my normal life. I hide myself away from the world, just to avoid glares, disgusting stares, and pitiful questions. I want and need time to heal.  For the past 2 months, i  haven’t had much social interaction with the outside world.

A wise source told me maybe this is your time to rest and just relax from the stress of school. You are always busy and overwhelming yourself at school with academics, clubs, family, and social life. This is your time to just take it easy, School will always be there and there are people supporting you. Throughout my journey on the road to recovery I am learning to do so many things. I have time to do anything. i am learning to re-build my physical strength, improve my vocabulary by reading and writing. I do these activities because I desire to as opposed to an academic obligation. I blog frequently, which is something I’ve always wanted to dedicate myself to. I read the bible. I research topics and ideas I am inquisitive to gain knowledge on. I am learning and teaching my self.

I have to rebuild myself (According to my friend Lonje) for the re-up, the comeback. I am determined to be better than before. Self growth, strength (physical, emotional, mental), self worth, love, less fear, and appreciation.  I will not give up because God and the people I love have not forsaken me. Each day is different but I am still recovering. I have yet to reach my full potential. I am beginning to see this unfortunate event as something positive.