About a year ago, I noticed my daughter making small marks in the upper right corner of her drawing paper, separate from the picture she created. I asked what they were. She said they were "telling marks" to remind her of the story her drawing told. She then looked at me and said, "You have telling marks, Mommy, too. On your tummy."
She proceeded to explain that my telling marks were very important because they tell the story of how she and her brother were born (according to her, the doctors "unzipped" my belly). I was stunned. Where I saw harsh slashes unnaturally distorting my stomach, she saw the origins of her life. Where I saw an ugly mess of misshapen scar tracks, she saw a joyful storyline. She often asks to see them and she will trace their unyielding paths with tender fascination. Without fail, she then wants the to hear the story of how she and her brother were born. I always oblige, creating a happy tale out of those days which brought me the greatest horrors I have ever known - how's that for ironic therapy?
I still have days when frustration causes me to curse the new normal and rail against the human error that caused it and I have no grand philosophy on or strategy for eradicating the physical and mental pain of telling marks. I just know that my daughter gave me a way to see mine positively, a way to remember that, despite everything, those telling marks are the permanent testament to both the blessing of my children's existence and the simple fact that I am here to tell them our story.
Cheers and thank you....