Safety in numbers

I don’t know why or when the first incident happened. It might have been when I was very little. I have some faint thought of a memory that my sister might have dropped me on my head while carrying me as an infant.

I’m pretty sure she didn’t mean to…I’m pretty sure she never meant to hurt.

And i don’t actually have a physical memory of it. An actual image of me falling in exactly that way. Physical memory like every time you see someone get hurt you cringe and have a feeling that resonates almost painfully from your belly button. That once life line. I can’t remember every one but the defining moments ones. Like the first time I was in the hospital.

That time I was jumping on the double bed with my 3 or 4 year old brother. My hair was in pigtails. I was jumping in the middle of the bed, being practical with space however because there were two of us on the bed and I was close to the edge of the bed. You didn’t want to jump too close to the walls because it was covered in blue bumpy paint so I gave my brother plenty of room. I’d scratched my arm on that wall at night til I learned how to sleep still with my arms tucked under me. I sleep like that today.

So I jumped close to the edge of the bed. The one that was closest to the door

and the dresser.

And we were just killing ourselves laughing. It was so much fun. Imagine for a family of 5, 2 sisters, 1 brother mom and dad. Typical Canadian family. We had no trampoline. Not like other kids had. Our trampoline was that double bed

And we jumped. And laughed.

I had a large jar tank on my dresser. Filled with brook caught trout.

My favorite activity ever in the summer was fishing and those fish were my trophies. My mom and dad always let me bring them home. But I would have to release them back within a few days otherwise they would die. So i stocked the old square cement well at Bradley Creek

And I decided that day, that it would be a good idea to check out my fish as I was jumping wildly on that bed. My brother had already been bounced to the floor once or twice.

So as he was getting back up I decided to lean over to the dresser and check on my fish.

And my brother started to stand up on the bed. I pushed myself off of the dresser and attempted my first jump, just as my brother did.

And we jumped again. The stakes got higher, we figured out how to double bounce just in that instant and we jumped in sync and I had just about gotten my body right from bending over to inspect the fish. A body in motion stays in motion

But instead of sailing head on to the fish jar, my head kind of launched itself towards the corner of the dresser. And my mom cried. She was mad, at least that’s what came across. Or that’s what I read. I was scared. But it was weird at the hospital. I could feel the doctor pulling my broken skin back together. There was no more pain thankfully.

Those kinds of detailed memories. I’ve had many. Many incidents of elaborate detailed memory of the pain I’ve endured. I remember them, even when I shouldn’t. I don’t keep tally or count each time. I just know the moment, like when I slid down a slide and punctured my upper lip. That one has a visible scar. My mom almost passed out.

I remember those things. The physical breaks, the torn skin. The heartbreak. Always the heartbreak. She doesn’t know the extent to my heart break, but she’s always there to help me heal. And every time I can remember, I can remember my mom being there. I was allowed my own path. I wasn’t controlled. I never listened anyway. I climbed the trees and fell out. I jumped fences and broke bones. Held on too long.

I need to let go of remembering the pain. But for all I remember I know they are true injuries. They happened and it hurt. When I could see what it looked like, physically see a scar, wear the cast or feel the bruise, I didn’t often do it again.

But my heart is inside. Without a sling, no real stitch, no real tear but that same level of pain swells just as much as a physical scar. And people think

There’s a sense of security and proof in a visual scar. Those physical reminders. I remember the physical action. The direct moment when I  knew something was wrong mid air. People knew I was hurt. Without touching the heart the pain slams through. I felt it through and through. No physical sign, no witness. Just my heart just broken in two.

I still know where to go, to heal my heart, wounded, battered and bruised. My heavy heart that loves still so much, still torn in two. I wish I knew the physical scar of what not to do. Instead I heal just so. I tell my parents I’m fine when I’m not. And I stay sometimes in the dark, often alone. They let me be. They let me be whatever I want to be.

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