I have a 5” scar on my ankle, a rod and screws lie underneath. I have been incredibly lucky in that aside from somewhat limited flexibility, I suffer no ill effects from the three surgeries that made that scar almost 20 years ago. Weather doesn’t bother it and unless you push hard on the area, I have no pain.
Life’s scars are as unpredictable. Some heal right away, some are fine “post-op” but may cause you complications in the future, some have their own triggers: dates, smells, sounds, places, pictures. And there are those that seem to have never happened at all.
Today is the 7th anniversary of my mom’s death. Yesterday, the scar was painful; today I know it’s there but it does not hurt. Of course, it’s early in the day and I can recall every moment of June 26, 2012 so I can’t be sure that as we approach the moment the scar was created, there won’t be pain.
Everyone heals differently and the severity of the wound is yet another determining factor in that process. My mom and I were attached at the hip, and losing her was not like losing the proverbial limb, but a part of my heart and my soul. Some may not understand why 7 years later I still grieve, why this scar is either numb or painful after 2,556 days. But I know why and I will continue to work hard to find a place in between, where the memories bring me comfort and joy, and honor her and the relationship we shared. And if at 17 years or 27 or 37 it is the same as it is today, I will still know why.
The summer after my ankle injury, when we would go to the beach as we did quite often, I would jokingly tell her that I just knew everyone was staring at my hideous, heinous ankle scar. She would roll her eyes at me, then as seriously as she could, assure me that, yes, everyone was.
A happy memory. No pain.
The healing continues.
I miss you, Mom.