I was watching ABC News last night and there was a young man on there who was shot several times at the movie theater in Aurora, Colorado last summer. This guy was biking across the country when he stopped to take in a movie. He was shot in the neck, arm and chest and, as there always seems to be someone in horrific cases like this, he miraculously survived.
He is in the news now because he has set out to finish his ride and accomplish what he was originally setting out to do. In the interview I saw, he was so positive and made a comment that he actually didn't mind the scars because every day when he looks in the mirror it reminds him that he is lucky to be alive and that he should live life to the fullest.
Every single day when I look in the mirror I see a lot of scars. From childhood accidents, to a chicken pox scar to the scars from my most recent running fall, they are all written there. But by far, the biggest and most noticeable scar I see is the one that surrounds my body in a circle from having the excess skin removed.
Every day I have thought of it as constant reminder of what a failure I was most of my life. An "in your face" reminder that I was such a fat, out of control loser that I required MAJOR SURGERY to fix what I had done to myself.
But what if I have been thinking of it wrong? What if I took the attitude of this young man who sees his very visable scars as TRIUMPH rather then tragedy? What if I look at that scar and say to myself that I finally got it right. I made a choice to EXTEND my life and have more QUALITY in that life as well as quantity.
Looking at the pictures Marc took at the beach, I focused on my stretch marks and the disgusting amount of loose skin covering my thighs that hide the wonderful muscle I have under there. And I thought about how UGLY I look and I wished that Marc could have an incredibly attractive wife. But rather then see these imperfections as deformities to disgust me maybe I should think of them of reminders of where I have been and how lucky I am to be where I am now.
I am certain that many of you out there also struggle with the scars you wear on your body. For those of you who have had children, do you see your stretch marks as a disfigurement or do they remind you that you created and carried a wonderful life inside you?
Do you see that scar on your arm as a reminder of accident that you lament or does it tell you you are lucky to be alive?
I think that it would be wonderful to get to that place of acceptance and gratefulness rather then the constant judging and self-hatred that I still have over my appearance. And it's all about changing perception now, isn't it?
Thoughts on your scars?