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Am I a Freak or Am I Special?

When I was born I had a very dark purplish black patch covering the upper part of my right leg and half my butt. The midwife thought that I might have had internal bleeding and panic went through the adults present. The doctor, who was consulted by phone, told them to draw a line with a marker around the mark and see if it spread. When it didn’t, they realized it was a birthmark. This was the first of many times I would have a room full of people staring at my birthmark. When I was 9 months, 2 years, and 4 years old they did surgeries to remove it. I was born in 1979 so the cancer fear was big and the understanding and treatment was not as advanced. They cut off an inch by twelve inch strip from the center. This gave me what I call a Frankenstein scar from my knee to my hip. Since the plan was to keep cutting into the birthmark and pulling the skin together there was no need to make it look “normal”.

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Me at age 2 or 3

When we are young we don’t worry what others think.

So as far back as I remember that is what my leg looked like; giant discolored spot and giant scar from my knee to hip. When I turned 5 my growth spurts started and there wasn’t enough skin to cut and pull. By the time I was 11 the “good skin had invaded the bad skin”, to quote my doctor, and I didn’t need any more surgery. Cancer wasn’t a risk. My doctor was actually baffled and said he had never heard of that happening before. Cancer was actually never what bothered me.

I grew up with people staring and asking questions. I had to explain it wasn’t a burn (which people often thought it was), it wasn’t a disease, I wasn’t contagious, and many other explanations. My parents always did their best to not treat me different and try to make me feel good about it. I grew up in the central valley of California so keeping it covered wasn’t an option unless I wanted to die of heat stroke and never go swimming. In some ways I just accepted this part of myself. It didn’t bother me when I saw it and I liked being unique. In other ways, I was a freak. People either pitied me, were scared, and/or didn’t know how to react.

I have felt that this, on top of seeing energy and talking to fairies, had made me feel like an outsider, like I don’t belong. Maybe though, this is how everyone feels to a certain extent. No one is “normal” and every person has something that makes them uniquely them. Maybe your scars are not on the outside of your body. We all struggle to hide our scars and do what we can to fit in. We want to be noticed but not rejected. You will find peace when you accept yourself. Look at the parts of yourself that you want to hide or you think makes you unacceptable and send it love. See how this uniqueness could benefit you. What makes you feel like a freak might be what makes you special.