"A scar does not form on the dying. A scar means I survived." --Little Bee by Chris Cleave
We've all got scars from our past--some physical, some emotional, some hidden from all eyes to see, others are painfully obvious. When I was a youth minister, I was always looking for new ice-breaker activities for retreats and events. I remember one specific icebreaker sparked conversation by saying, "Tell the other person about a scar you have, and how you got it."
I have a scar on my wrist. When I was 6 years old my brother and I were fighting over who got to sit in the front seat of the car. We decided to race to the door, and whoever got there first would win. I ran with all my might--I was in the lead! I put out my hands to stop myself on the door and--my hands went a little too high. Our door was 1/2 glass and 1/2 wood, and I put my hand right through the glass. I remember all the blood, the EMTs coming to our house, the shot and 3 stitches I got at our doctor's office.
I have many more scars. At least a hundred. They're smaller, and less noticeable than the one on my wrist... but they're there. I see them every single day. Tiny reminders of a life that seems like a movie I watched more than something I actually went through. But the scars, they speak to me. I survived.
Ten years ago today was the last time that I ever cut myself. Ten years ago today was the last time that I ever had a drink of alcohol. Ten years ago, I didn't have the strength to stop myself from barreling down the path of destruction that I was on. But my friends did, and I am so very thankful to them for that. I would count the days that I would go cut-free. For the longest time 43 was my "record." But today? It has been 3652 days since I last cut myself. 3652!
I didn't think I would.
And I'm so glad that I did.