I was bouncing to the sink to wash my hands when suddenly the water from the faucet splashed on the mirror. As I begin to clean the water drops off, I was reminded of a scar I gently cover up daily with concealer. Between my eyes; there is an asymmetric scar that is in a shape of a backwards L. I was given this scar by someone that I can now say is not a demon, not a horrible person, not a representation of black males, but merely a teacher.
At the time at nineteen, I had my life planned out. This person changed the course of my life by dividing the visual effects of my face. Marking me a spokesperson for questions and judgment.
The sound of brass connecting to the bridge of your nose sounds similar to a car wreck. The pain is probably worse. I had no idea that in-between your eyes were so sensitive. This painful connection paralyzed me on the spot, as I fell to the floor in slow motion, I remembered I landed on the front of his hi-tech left boot.
All I remembered at the time of the impact is what my appearance would look like in my future. I had Vaseline my eyebrows in perfect symmetry. The only thing I could do was be still, if I blinked my face would probably have exploded or so I thought.
With brass knuckles still on his right hand, he held my head, and I could see his shiny pupils dilated from his masterpiece. I looked up at him and just turned the corner of my lips up with a smile.
You see visible scarring is easy, the emotional attachment to the pain is the hard part. I asked myself for years if I had died what would the world be without me in it. There would be no historical data of my weirdness, my boldness, my fearlessness. Here is when I realized that I was a victim. I have three beautiful daughters; the pain didn’t numb me into nonexistence. It taught me right away about trust.
It told me that no matter the pain, God is a healer. Every time I wash my face, I am reminded of the slow motion and strategic movement the doctor orchestrated to stitch my face up. I remembered the darkness I experienced, that forced me to tap into a passion I always knew was there. It taught me that beauty is not outer but inner.
I won’t lie, that lesson was not learned overnight, there was a lot of confusion at such a young age. So when I hear someone say why aren’t you smiling, I am speaking with my eyes that smiling is not an indication of my appreciation of life.
Breathing is my validation that I could have been dead twenty-four years ago, but God spared me. The stories that hide behind my dark eyes have been so private for so many years, keeping quiet keeps you at a victim state, letting go, makes you victorious!