The room slowly came into focus as the effects of anesthesia began to wear off. I could see the nurse and the doctor smiling at me. “Congratulations! The operation was a success. One week of recuperation and you will be ready to go home”, said the Doctor. “Thank you”. I replied hoarsely. The Doctor scribbled on my chart and handed it back to the nurse. “Call me if you need me”, he said on his way out of the room. “And hey”, he added “Congratulations again on your new life Alexander, Oh wait sorry, Alexandria!”
I looked at him as he left the room. Alexander? Alexandria? Who are they? I am John and I was here for an appendix removal.
I have a scar on my right hand. Well, my right wrist actually. It is a pretty nasty scar and it pretty much looks like I slashed my wrist. I did not, but it looks like that.
Over the years, the scar has been a great conversation starter. People who accidentally see it cannot help but question how I got it. It is also pretty prominently placed and there is no way I can hide it and so the chances of people seeing it is pretty darn high. I think there is something magnetic about the scar cause one look at it and people want to know how I got it.
Even, seemingly less intrusive people ask me about it. I guess they want to know why I tried to slash my wrist cause in all fairness, it does look like that. I am normally a very cheerful person and so perhaps the possibility of my darkest hour leaving a mark on my hand intrigues them. I am a lover of drama and so I admit it, I feed their curiosity too. I make dramatic sighs, droop my shoulders and avoid eye contact. I smile and refuse to answer their question and that drives them nuts.
The scar has got me many things from hugs, to knowing smiles, to understanding glances and at one time, even a free muffin. People assume they know how I got the scar and I thrive on their assumptions. If I am in a particularly dramatic mood, I even take the game further and embellish it to my liking. On somedays the scar is the result of a heartbreaking break up. On others, I am the disappointed in myself. I’ve however, never once said that I’ve slashed my wrist. Never. Not once. Yet everytime people assume I did.
I’ve wondered how they’d react if they found out how I got the scar. The true story. That it is the result of a freak accident when a 13 year old tried to throw out a candy wrapper after having sneaked it from under the watchful eyes of her sister who was on candy watch (Don’t ask me why but I don’t seem to remember by she was not sharing that bowl of candies). So engrossed was she in keeping an eye out for her sister that she completely missed noticing that the glass window was not open. She pushed her hands through the space with enough force to propel the candy wrapper to the bin on the outside and was instead met with glass that cut into her hand and gave her that scar.
It is a simple, childhood story yet to this date it provides me with so much drama. Not that I’m complaining cause this story would most definitely not get me a free muffin.
I couldn’t stop smiling. My husband was coming home. After being deployed forever, he was finally coming home. He had left when I had gotten pregnant and had not even come home to see our baby. That’s the way he is. Nation always comes first. Family comes later. That’s the way I like it too. That’s what attracted me to him. I was hoping it would be a good day for Baby Zac too. That he wouldn’t be cranky today. That he would be the perfect baby, just for today, just for his Dad. I couldn’t stop smiling cause we were going to be a family again.
I was rocking Baby Zac when the doorbell rang. I quickly checked myself in the mirror and made sure I looked good. I was looking a little pale but I hoped he would not notice. My mother-in-law beat me to the door. I guess she is just as excited as I am to have him home. I peeped out, a little shy and a little excited. There he was, looking just as handsome as the day we got married. We smiled at each other, so glad to be together again.
My mother-in-law meanwhile was sobbing at the door. She had just got news of her son’s demise. His body would be coming home soon, to be laid to rest next to his wife and their stillborn son.