My little brother once said about raising two little boys "raise them, hell I'm just trying to keep them alive". Made me think about my childhood and then it got me started checking out the scars on my body and the stories behind them. A physical scar is the perfect source for remembering the past. I can look at the different scars and right away remember when, where and how. Scars are ok, scars are better than the alternative. Scars mean you have healed, the alternative is not healing. That's not good.
I think my scars give me strength. I look at them and of all the memories they bring on, pain is not the only thing that comes to mind. I know most of the scars are the result of something painful, but that's not what I remember. So it let's me know pain is fleeting, it's usually quick and hardly ever as bad as expected. This has helped me deal with painful medical procedures many times over.
The size of the scar has nothing to do with the amount of pain realized in getting the scar. I have a scar on my chest that is the size of a match head. What gave me that scar was one of the most painful experiences of my life.
I was not well, really, really not well. I needed a bone marrow transplant to heal. Well before you can have a bone marrow transplant you have to undergo total body radiation and a bunch of chemo. Basically they almost kill you. The doctors want you and your immune system so weak that your body has no choice but to accept the new bone marrow. But really that's another story. I just wanted to tell you about the tiny scar left from the catheter put in my chest so they could administered all these drugs and check your blood a hundred times a day without sticking you with a needle each time. So they rig a catheter into a vein in your chest. It's real cool, you get to live with a plastic tube sticking out of you chest for a while. For me it was about 2 months.
Getting the catheter is no big deal. Getting the catheter remover was the most painful thing in my life and I have a tiny scar to remind me. It reminds me that when the guy went to remove the catheter it had "grown" in. It wasn't coming out the usual way. I'm not sure what the usual way is, but I could tell by the look on the face of the guy trying to remove it that we had a problem. Well I had the problem. The guy removing the catheter told me to hold on and BAM. That bastard! He pulled the catheter out like you would start a lawn mower. I cried for days.