The next morning, Thursday, May 12th, 2016, packing my bag to leave Paris as our travels were now taking us to London, a memory gripped me. It was a vivid memory of me opening a card from the other woman. Me, sitting at my home office desk with a sick, empty feeling inside as I read the words written by the woman who had been, intermittently, having sex with my husband for eight years. Even though the sane part of me knew she erroneously held me accountable for everything my husband had said and done, I still couldn’t believe the words on the page. Words of hate and venom and blame directed at me. Ultimately, words of understanding, friendship, and encouragement written to Blue Eyes. The comment Blue Eyes’ therapist made to him at the time, after reading the card was, “wow, she thinks she is your best friend.” That day was May 10, 2014, and what transpired from there is documented in this post: I did not leave tonight.
There aren’t really enough words to describe how I feel about that day two years ago. It is a bit of a blur now, but after waking in the middle of the night in Paris, I know there is still pain there in my subconscious. There is also a forever reminder of that day, in the form of a 10cm scar on my left inner forearm. That scar does not physically hurt me anymore except in my nightmares, I guess. But, emotionally, it makes me sad. Most people do not notice the scar. It mostly blends with my skin and is in a fairly inconspicuous place. It was never meant to be seen by anyone. It was for me, I needed it to release the pain, so I didn’t die of heartache. I didn’t mention the nightmare to Blue Eyes. I didn’t even mention the two-year anniversary of that fateful day. Instead, I went about enjoying the rest of our time in Paris. Later in the afternoon on the Eurostar from Paris to London, I know Blue Eyes could tell I was a little down. He had no idea why and that is a good thing. These memories are mine. They are mine to metabolize and work through. He did not cut me. I cut myself.
There are lots of inspirational sayings about scars, but I think my favorite one is this:
The scars we have on our bodies do tell stories, many of my own I have revisited here on my blog. When I was 14, I had an emergency appendectomy. I was not a clumsy or accident-prone child. That surgery scar was my first real noticeable scar. I have written about how scary the experience was and how it left emotional damage as well. (I did it) When I was 30, my second son was born by emergency C-section. That scar is one I cherish, but again, I never acknowledged the emotional baggage, until post d-day. (Unburying the trauma) When I was 49, I was in a snorkeling accident and I have some nasty scars to prove… I fucking survived. (Ocean Waters)
This particular cutting scar on my arm, however, is one that humbles me and forces me to face the fact that I am much more vulnerable than I ever imagined. I did this to myself. I had my reasons, but they were driven by trauma. I have learned from the experience and I have a forever reminder that I am a survivor.