Monday, June 13, 2011

Scars are Souvenirs

As I near 40 years of age, I can reflect back on my life so far with all the memories I have. I realized, though, that not all of my memories are in my brain. I can look at my body and find memories of good times, stupid ideas, and the battle wounds of growing up in my scars.

I have a mark on my left wrist - a jagged vertical line. I don't remember what happened, but I do remember the face of my friend Laura Lokay from the second grade who told me know to pick at it. When I look at that scar, I can see her face so clearly and even hear the wise words coming from her 7 year old mouth.

I have a chicken pox scar on my chest. I got chicken pox as a gift from a classmate for my 17th birthday. I remember being out of school for about 4 days and missing our homecoming game. I also remember the night before I broke out. My good friends to me out to celebrate my birthday and we returned to my house to watch movies. Sometime during "The Running Man," I realized I had a fever. We had to send my friends home, but I still remember having a good time.

On my leg ankle, there is a big spot on top of area where my foot and leg meet. I fell down the patio stairs at my fraternity house in college (Yes, it was a co-ed business fraternity called Alpha Kappa Psi and we had a house on fraternity/sorority row at UGA). I fell with my foot under my body and am really lucky I did not break anything. I was pretty drunk (surprise!) at the time, so it probably kept me from realizing I was falling. Man, there were some good times in that house and on that patio.

I cut off a big chuck of my right ring finger and you can still see the damage. I was trying to impress this wonderful guy by making dinner for him. I was using a mandolin cutter, and just when he asked me of I should be using the safety guard, I sliced off the side of my finger. He was so calm. He cleaned my up, threw out all the food (and I presume part of my finger), and ordered pizza for us. Thank goodness he decided to marry me despite my being an absolute klutz.

My most recent scar is from an attempt to do a muscle up at CrossFit. I never did get that move, but I will always have a discoloration on my right wrist as a memory of trying to do it.

My favorite scar, however, is from the cable car incident while on vacation in San Francisco. I have a nice scar in the middle of my right shin. Bill and I were riding on the running board of a cable car on our first day in San Fran. We went around the corner, but we were heavy. The operator asked all of us on our side to jump down and push us through the corner. Well, I jumped a second too late, and my shin banged the side of the car. I knew it hurt, but it wasn't until we got to the hotel that I saw I was bruised and cut. At least I knew it would make a good story, and it did.

Yes, I have many scars. Each one has a story - some I remember clearly, and some I can't recall. They are little stories of my life and I wear them proudly.