Scar Stories

Coconut lime verbena… What a sucker for marketing I sometimes am.  It doesn’t even really smell like coconut lime now that I think about it, but years ago I saved up my money and raced over to the mall to buy this particular body butter on sale.  It reminded me of the beach and that made me smile.

I’m now sitting on my bed working this thick cream into my skin when I notice a scar I hadn’t thought about in maybe 10 years.  It was from being stabbed with a needle from a frustrated man.  I stared at the mark, barely visible now and remembered it’s pain, so sharp, so abrupt. Flash! My attention now turned to a memory of a scar on my thigh– I look down, there it is still!  I had been thrown into the side of my mother’s bed.  Part of the exposed wood had ripped a deep gash in my flesh.  Recall allows me to still feel that pain too… its sting and how every time I flexed my leg or tried to walk for a week it would grate open again.  Flash!  I can’t believe I haven’t thought about this in forever… But now, I remember clear as day sitting in the front of my father’s truck, refusing to get out at the market because I was terrified of being raped again.  I was very young and he seemed like a giant man to me at the time.  He was speaking harshly to me about how there were customers waiting on me, but what I remember most was him holding my forearm so tightly.  He squeezed and turned my elbow so that the flat of my left limb was exposed and lowered the electric cigarette lighter down slowly, giving me decreasing opportunity to fold and agree to work that day… Which I eventually did.  I squirmed and squealed but he kept lowering the glowing orange coils down to my tender skin.  I thank God that scar isn’t viable anymore… I guess I caved early enough for physical wound not to be too deep.  It’s been so, so long since I thought about that day… Flash! Another scar.  Flash! Another memory.  A bad pattern for this night had begun…

It’s amazing what realities are in front of your face day after day that you ignore. It’s amazing how enough of a routine can make you forget what was once painful.  It’s amazing the power of denial.

May this blog serve as an education to those who do not yet know or understand the atrocities of trafficking and may it serve as an encouragement to those who understand it all too well.

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