Sometimes I look at my scars with a deep sense of shame and regret but most of the time I feel nothing.They are in my past life and I want to move on.
Most days I wear short sleeves freely without a care in the world but other times elongated glances,hushed comments or questions remind me of the dark hole I crawled out of.When at home I often rather hide my arms,I don’t want my mum to see that as it makes her upset and she’ll often comment that I should use something to make them fade.
I worry what people think…An ungrateful girl possibly?I wish they would know that it’s not like that.When I think of self harm I often think of relief.Relief from panic,from self loathing,from the urge to purge,from guilt,from what I said to someone or what someone said to me.Self harm is something I struggle to accept as “wrong” or something I should stop.Because in a way that may seem incomprehensible to others I have found it helpful.It was a way to have control over my body when I no longer could use weight-loss or food or purging.A way to release feelings.In some ways it felt rebellious “it’s my body,I can do what I want”.Sometimes it was for punishment sometimes it seemed like the “better option” compared to other things.
Due to the summer sun the lines have come up darker and occasionally someone chooses to comment on them,often amongst a group,during conversation.My heart races and mind clouds and I panic to find an answer that will hide the truth.”I fell off my bike into the bush”.I turn away embarrassed. Honestly why do people ask?Most of the time they seem to know the answer anyway.
If you don’t feel comfortable sharing you shouldn’t feel obliged to.You do not owe them an explanation for your body or your life.Its ok to set boundaries and to tell as much or as little as you want.
I did what I did and that’s it.Ive accepted it was a coping mechanism that helped me through some hard times and now I have better ways to cope,most of the time.I don’t need to share my story with every Random stranger but I will with those who I think it can help or those close enough.
I think a satisfactory answer when someone asks “what happened to your arms?” Is “past life”.Scars are just marks and they don’t define you.