What the Scar, Dude!


Scar‘Why don’t you do anything about that scar?’ not the first time a passing acquaintance having made that comment, I let it pass with a perfunctory smile. In a society obsessed with perfection blemishes are seldom viewed with kindness and scorned at with a vengeance. Society has become incapable of viewing scars as anything else but ‘something which should be removed/hidden’. An explanation to why a scar is of significance in some one’s life will mostly meet deaf ears and at the most elicit sympathy. This is a humble effort at putting it in a different perspective. For those with an open mind.

Cycling to school was a luxury in those times and circumstances I was brought up. On an uneventful day cycling back home from a tiring session, giddy in the headwind, the slope was inviting. Cruising down,halfway I realized the brakes have failed. Frantically holding onto the brakes with all my might and too terrified to try any manoeuvres I froze. Rest of it is all but a blur. The rocks, banged up cycle, rush in a rickshaw…. Waking up two days later in an emergency ward I was lucky to escape with only 15 stitches, on my head. No, it was not a life changing incident. Neither I had any revelations coming to me.

I have carried the scar of that incident, literally, for 14 years now. For me it’s a reminder, a check. Reminder of the compassion shown by total strangers to rush me to the hospital after giving me the right first aid. Reminder of the love and affection of my family who waited with anxious prayers outside that ICU. Its also a check when I get too heady with success to the uncertainty ahead. A check for the occasional narcissistic tendencies.

I am sure each of the scars you carry screams out a story. Many a times the physical scars don’t bother us; but the emotional ones do. The mistakes we made, failures we encountered, the breakups, the rejections; some of our own making and some of others. The reactions to these scars are three types. Hanging on to them tragically: Ignoring or hiding them under patches: Accepting them for what they are. Most fall in the first two categories. Is it wrong to do so? Certainly not. Its your choice. The hell, it might even keep you happy. But the question to be asked is which of these actions is of highest quality, which can better yourself. That should be the wise choice.

I cant help but quote Rumi here ‘The wound is the place where the Light enters you’. It’s our duty to let the light enter. To accept a scar for what it is.