Scars—they are all over my abdomen, but at least they are not the result of a kidney transplant or a tumor removal. They represent the little surgeries that have paraded through my life: the appendectomy, the cholecystectomy, the Lap Band, the hernia repair, c-section, the stretch marks. I will never wear a bikini.
I rarely think of physical pain anymore, since I have lost weight. I stretch more. I walk more. Pain means I have moved my body, and that is a good thing. Pain makes me tired. Headaches. Hip aches. Neck aches. Annoying more than anything else. Nothing is worse than emotional pain, I think. You can scream when you are in physical pain, but with emotional pain, even when the scream stops, it continues on, silently, ringing in your ears, my ears. My ears ring. Ever since the rape, they have rung. Nerve damage, they tell me. Bad balance and dizziness and motion sickness.
What is good about this? Hmmmm. Nothing. Why be grateful? Because I am alive.
Last year, I took part in the "Letters of Gratitude" course during which we were tasked to write 30 letters on 30 different topics until we reached a place of thankfulness. Above is my 6th letter, unedited.