And Now a Brief Word from Josephine, the Scar That Runs All the Way Down My Back

FED UP TM Ideas worth ranting about
Hey! Here in the back. ScarJo here. I’m FED UP with the lack of respect, okay?

Look, I’m a long, faintly pink line that starts just the above the shoulder blades and ends above the ass-crack. Yeah I’m real sorry about offending your delicate sensibilities. I moved in when my landlady was about 13 and had had a spinal fusion cause her scoliosis was out. of. control. Whereas I held things together.

I was a lot more colorful in those days. A lot more sensitive. Cut nerves I can handle though. But I’m supposed to accept I’m shameful? I’m not exactly blaming my landlady, who was a teenager at the time, for trying to find bathing suits and a prom dress that would hide as much of me as possible. She was a new driver still looking for an unmarked exit off the Bullshit Highway.

“Would you prefer unblemished and dead?”

Remember, all I am is a pink line, with the tiniest smidge of a ridge, on a person’s back. We’re not talking about a sucking chest wound. Or pus. Or whatever’s wrong with Steve Bannon’s complexion. I’m not asking to be a big deal, I’m not asking for attention, for cripes sakes. It’d just be nice to get out and get some freaking fresh air once in a while, you know?

But nooooooo, I’m a SCAR and I must be hidden.

(Yes I know about Padma Lakshmi. Love her, love everything about her. Her scar, Leteen, is great at our meetings. But the fact remains that the reason you even know about her scar is because its high profile is still so unusual.)

It’s not just that my looks are insulted. Or that however well I’ve healed changes nothing in how I’m regarded. And I’m a bummer, to boot?

What, am I a TRAUMA to you? Am I Suffering with a capital S? Am I ugly? Is my cell regeneration offensive to you?

I’m a friggin’ scar. On a physical body. Without me, whaddaya got? Open wounds! Closed wounds! Infected wounds! No offense to wounds, they’re fascinating but c’mon. I’m much lower maintenance.

Plus I have to signify something?

Okay, I signify…I signify that my landlady got cut into, sewed up, and yada yada here I am. Let me tell you, that yada yada covers a whole lotta work.

I don’t signify. I don’t have to. I exist.

Tell you what. I’ll be a SIGN. I’m a sign that something happened here. You want something more “sophisticated,” take it up with my landlady.

Hold on I’m getting a message.

Perfect. I’m finally getting a few words in and my landlady, who gets to say how things are ALL the time, needs to add her two cents.

O gawd she’s wanting me to tell you I do signify something.

‘I, ScarJo, am the mark of her being tested. Surgery, the mistake with the anesthesia, a body cast for six months – it was a freaking initiation, which was pretty perfect timing for a 13-year-old. I’m not a decoration. I’m here because my landlady had to undergo something and that was her choice but also not her choice.’

That’s how she looks at it. I, Josephine the scar, do not signify trauma or suffering or ugliness to my landlady but she understands that this is between her and me. She just doesn’t like having all kinds of other people’s stuff projected onto our relationship.

Her and me both.

But enough about her. Back to me. You know a scar doesn’t set out to REMIND you of something bad that happened to you, right? A scar if PROOF that you friggin’ survived and healed up. Would you prefer unblemished and dead? We all flake and fall off eventually so stop complaining about me!


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