Behind every scar is a story (Justine Musk)
Yes, and that’s why I write about it, however hard and bitter it may be, no matter how awkward and humbling it can be.
Writing is my daily catharsis, the only satisfying way I found to free myself from the emotional blows I got in the past, to heal them so that they would become scars, no more seeping wounds, to be able to see them from the outside, not only from the inside. The only way for me to put them out there so I could ultimately lay them to rest.
« It’s only when you find the strength – and a safe inner space — to process those experiences, and weave them into your daylight life narrative, that you gain any real power over them. You put stories to the scars. What kind of story you tell is up to you. You can’t change the past, and you can’t change the facts – but story is the stuff you put around the facts in order to relate them and charge them with meaning. »
It’s only by writing that I can let my past fully empower me instead of weakening me.
It’s the precise reason why I have a tattooed bird on my wrist : to remind me daily that I am the one who chooses to be empowered or weakened. I can choose to fly free from my chains by telling a story about them that gives me power over them, or I can choose to let my wounds and scars weigh me down by telling me a story of helplessness and woe.
This bird is here to remind me I DID set myself free from my past, to rise as the master of my life and my happiness. And that I CAN do it again, no matter how hard it may be.
It is exactly what is at work when I talk about my disability.
I can choose to wail over the injustice of life that has made me the only deaf kid in a family where communication is hardly a skill. Or I can choose to feel empowered because my disability made me the only member of this family aware of the huge importance of good communication in any relationship, aware of all the misleads and sufferings a poor communication may cause, aware of my own power to bring change, to break prejudices and misunderstandings through communication.
I can choose to wail about the fact my deafness locks me away from oral communication in some situations. Or I can choose to enjoy the mastery it gives me in written and non-verbal communication.
So – don't ever feel ashamed about your errors, your failures, your traumas, your differences. Own them. Like the scars they are ; like an epic hero who comes back from the underworld victorious and proud of the battle marks he got there.
Own them, acknowledge them for what they are ; weave their story in your words and fully release the power they contain and can give you. Learn the lessons they taught you, and use them as tools to build your life.
You can’t change the facts. You can’t change the past. But the meaning you give them is up to you.
And that meaning is what makes you rise from slave of your past to its master.
What gives you power over your own life instead of feeling hopeless in front of it.
We are made of stories.