Tuesday, January 02, 2007

This is Agi







This is Agi's story.

I have an ex above my eye, an ex above my lips and an indistinct something beside my…hmmm…left eye [I had to check again in the mirror – I never know which side it is on]. When I was a little girl every time I would meet a new kid they would ask me what is that? How did it happen to you? …obviously grownups don’t do that sort of thing really and sometimes I wish they did. Each time as I would answer those questions as a little girl, I would feel special; I would feel like someone wanted to know my story. Like it mattered what happened to me, and it made me feel tough, like I’ve been through something, like I survived.

The one on the left side of my eye, close to the temple was a close brush with the lady of the scythe. It happened when I was five. I used to go away on holidays with only my father. He was a young dad and apparently he could pick up all the chicks with me sitting on his shoulders, holding onto his big curly head of hair. I had fallen asleep one night and he needed to carry me up these very steep stairs. They were in a vacation house in the mountains; part of the highland style housing that is steep in every way. The stairs were almost like a ladder. As my dad was walking up the stairs one of the railing pieces he grabbed came loose and went flying into me. Apparently my father will never forget how the blood was squirting from what looked like my temple. It was a close call but nothing really happened, thankfully I wasn’t whisked off to a hospital, the skin healed on its own and I honestly do not even remember this event. I like the way the scar looks and the fact that I don’t really associate much trauma with it. I’ve seen pictures with a compress over that area but overall it seemed like a small thing in comparison to what happened the next year.

A room full of adults having dinner at a huge round table at my grandma’s place. There are two children, the first a girl six years old [me] - the other a boy three years old [my cousin]. The girl is thirsty and is given compote to drink out of a small glass cup – the boy jumps onto her just at the moment when she has the glass cup in her mouth – it shatters and splits her lip in two, close to the crease on the right side, a small shard also cuts a small wound above her right eye. The blood is thick and dark crimson in colour. The girl is wearing a striped turtleneck, the pink and maroon stripes quickly turn to crimson and vermillion. That site she will never forget. Sitting looking at herself in the mirror of her grandmother’s oak vanity she sees herself soaked in blood, waiting for help to arrive. Two of them finally arrive in an ambulance, they tell everyone to clear the room, she’s left alone with them, one of them holds her, the other one sews her up, no anesthetics ...the pain is only a blur. She’ll never forget what one of them said close to the end – “we’re almost done, we’ll just sew this up quickly [referring to the wound above the left eye] it’ll feel like a mosquito bite” – my ass! That was the most painful mosquito bite I’ve ever had in my life! It felt awful to say the least. I was being saved yet at the same time I felt constrained, violated, and thrown into an abyss without protection of anyone I counted on. It felt like a rape of sorts.

This scar of mine is drawn in the history of our family. The guilt they all felt when I was screaming – they said later they’ve never heard someone scream like that. All they could do was stand on the other side of the door waiting for it to be over. I know it was an accident, no one’s fault really, it happened in spite of them – I believe they couldn’t have done much to prevent it - either way. I sat there waiting for it to happen perhaps, testing my own destiny and theirs. Strange the pain you forget, it is the guilt you don’t – even if it isn’t your own. I see the pattern of destruction. I see how that event had the power to shape so much in my life. How a seemingly simple cause and effect brought so much change in my young mind and strained my relationship towards men and my father. He was the one who was supposed to prevent this from happening – or so he feels, but he was unable to predict it. I in turn had to repeat certain patterns of destruction later on in my life to finally feel closure. And the presence of my attraction to pain will always be there – it is a love and hate relationship with myself. It was a loss of innocence in quite brutal of ways. I hate and love these “ex” scars, as they signify pain, and death. Death of what exactly …..?

My father left that year to go to Canada [I lived in Poland until I was ten]…maybe the death of the closeness I felt with him, and the protection he failed to provide. A death of the pure bliss that is childhood, which I am trying to desperately find again - to laugh and play like I used to – and feel like the world loved me for who I was no questions asked, without any doubts. The scars are so small now …. my face grew into them. As I rediscover my inner self and the power and beauty that lie inside, beyond all the externalities – a smile is creeping back into my face more and more.

***

1 comment:

Daniel said...

Absolutely indescribably beautiful face. The fact that you don't see the scars as a flaw is amazing too. Marry me. Thanks.