“It has been said, ‘time heals all wounds.’ I do not agree. The wounds remain. In time, the mind, protecting its sanity, covers them with scar tissue and the pain lessens. But it is never gone.” – Rose Kennedy
I’ll forever have these three scars on my arms
Two are from PICC lines (Peripherally Inserted Central Catheter) and the other, a midline.
Someone recently asked me what was on my arm, pointing to one of the scars. I casually responded, but today, I sat and reflected on not just the scars, but how they got there.
It is sad that sometimes I feel the need to justify being sick to others; hearing, “But You Don’t Look Sick…” is never something I like to hear, but at the same time, it’s nice to know I don’t look as horrible as I feel.
All that’s changed over the past 2 years, is that I no longer have an IV in my arm. When I had it, I “looked sick,” and didn’t need to explain to people that I didn’t feel well. Now that I don’t have it, I struggle with “the need” to prove to others I am sick; I don’t need to justify that I suffer from debilitating fatigue caused by Idiopathic Hypersomnia, a rare sleep disorder, as well as others like, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Excessive Daytime Sleepiness & narcolepsy (without cataplexy).
“In a perverse way, I was glad for the stitches, glad it would show, that there would be scars. What was the point in just being hurt on the inside? It should bloody well show.” ― Janet Fitch, White Oleander
Every day I continue to learn how to battle my invisible illnesses and let go of the fact that, people will believe what they want to believe; I don’t owe anyone an explanation.
When someone asks about my scars, I tell them I received antibiotics but then continue ask if they are aware of ticks and tick-borne diseases.
What I don’t say, is that the scars on my arms remind me, that I am brave, relentless and that I am a much stronger person than I was a few years ago; I’m stronger than I was yesterday.
They never have to know that, but I do.