The Scarred Life

The picture below is severely grotesque, so just a friendly reminder to everyone not to read this post while stuffing your mouth with your favorite food. Either you’ll end up losing your appetite which is quite the bummer or worst case scenario, barfing.

Scars! Scars! Scars! There is nothing more terrifying than this collection of hideous looking scars on my body taunting my naked eyes every now and then while saying “conceal me, conceal me quick!” I have my fair share of scars while growing up since I was pretty much babysat by my neighborhood. I was raised in a community where setting appointments with your neighbors for playtime isn’t practiced. Hence, children can frolic all throughout the day with no adult supervision and protectiveness looming over their heads which sadly often leads to accumulation of bruises and wounds more than the average number a psychologist claims children obtain from going through growth and development. As a young child, I learned to be independent and adaptive at a tender age, for I babysat myself the day I started walking few feet away from my grandmother’s house, literally. And of course, with all the freedom and curiosity the world has to offer, here was the little me climbing and swinging from tree to tree, running around, hopping here and there, tripping over my feet and falling multiple times a day. Thus, a heap of scars on my knees, my elbows, shoulders, forehead, chin and the list of body parts continue.

The main reason I got inspired to write about boring scars is due to the fact that I ended up getting additional massive, humongous scars on my forehead and my forearms when I had my vacation in the Philippines. This time, I wasn’t playing in the mud, clambering a mulberry tree or chasing a playmate like I used to when I was a kid but my clumsiness struck at the wrong time and place.

Accidents do occur when you least expected them to be like when you’re being gracelessly clumsy while holding a kettle of hot, boiling water sauntering through your way to the bathroom. As much as I wanted to have the longest, languid shower of my life, it was closed to impossible as hot showers and bath tubs in our town were only for people who could afford to pay and install such luxuries in their own houses. There was nothing lousier than the chilly and windy weather one particular day last December when I decided to heat up water to use for a quick shower. Being aware that first, I am the clumsiest person in the solar planet, and second I was holding an extra weight of kettle with hot water in it, I started trudging down the stairs to the bathroom outside our house with all the caution signs I could think of. What I saw along the way was a “biki” (portable chicken coop), and I had to critically think about an effective way to overcome the challenge of crossing over the thing without putting down the kettle or spilling the hot water for that matter. With the cocky thought of being the most careful human being in the planet Earth, I raised my right leg and attempted stepping over the chicken coop. A very bad idea indeed, for my right foot got caught on the stupid chicken coop and before I knew it, I was laying prone position on the ground with a soaring kettle as my shower head while having the most excoriating shower of my life.

Then it just happened, the forthcoming excruciating, stinging pain all over my body like every single sensory pain receptor had been triggered at the same time and they decided to join forces to torment me for whatever sin I had committed. I crawled my way to the bathroom like a mangled insect to wash off the burning sensation my body was experiencing. So I succeeded, albeit the agonizing pain was still there such that there was no amount of morphine that would ever ease it. Unfortunately, it wasn’t just about the pain from the second-degree burn I needed to be concerned of as my face was dripping with something viscous with a scent similar to pennies. It was blood spurting from a six-centimeter laceration on my forehead from banging my skull to an unknown source when I landed on the ground. I needed to at least stop the bleeding before I passed out, so I grabbed the grabbiest and probably the filthiest towel I had seen in my life and forcefully cloaked it on my forehead. Who cares about infection and gangrene when you are at the point of losing consciousness and hemorrhaging to death in your own bathroom? I attempted putting pressure on the wound but the bleeding wasn’t cooperating. At that point, I had no choice but to head to our town’s hospital before I ended up blacking out from severe blood loss.

What made it more pathetic was the fact that it happened on a Sunday morning wherein most of the people in my town went to church to confess their sins, my grandmother and uncle included. No neighbors, friends or Good Samaritans passing by to save my arse but me. Although they might have to second guess themselves whether to save me or not as I looked like the perfect visual image of a Halloween costume, a spooky zombie from the Apocalypse with disheveled hair and clothes shrouded with blood walking in the middle of the road alone. It was scary being on my own, for there was neither 911 nor someone to call to drive me to the nearest hospital. When I got to the hospital, two nurses came to the rescue, did their assessments, bombarded me with mundane questions, and gave me a shot for something I couldn’t remember while I waited for the doctor.

In the end, I barely recognized myself with a swollen face, five grotesque stitches on my forehead, revolting blisters on both forearms and multiple purplish bruises here and there. What made the whole ordeal ludicrous were the repetitive questions of whether I was intoxicated with alcohol or not when it happened. No, it was in the middle of the day for heaven’s sake, and I wish I were drunk as a skunk at that time so I have all the reasons to assert that I was run over by a fire truck caught on fire. It has been five months since my “little” accident and every time I look at the mirror or my forearms, I see these battle scars I call them mocking my self-esteem. They are indeed my souvenirs I gained from my vacation not to mention the traumatizing memory of the most horrendous physical pain I have suffered in my life. The scars may fade one day, but the harrowing pain I had gone through, there’s no doubt I will always remember as long as I live.

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