My sister turned fifteen earlier this month and invited a few of her friends over for a sleepover. I did a pretty good job of staying out of everyone's way, although my pastor's granddaughter did end up seeing me in my nightgown. Anyway, my sister also decided she wanted brownies instead of a cake. I made said brownies. And I burned my arm on the 350-degree oven rack.
It didn't hurt much, so I didn't bother putting anything on it. Little did I know that today, nearly two weeks after the fact, I'd still be mending.
"Do you think I'll get a scar out of it?" I asked my mom on Monday, as we were fetching Dad's shop-vac from the house we're trying to rent out.
"Probably," said Mom.
"Why do you think that's cool? Most people hate scars."
"They're like tattoos for me," I explain. "Each one of them reminds me of something."
At the moment, I have two noticeable scars. The one, obviously, is the little pink line on my left forearm that'll probably disappear entirely in a few months or years. Every time I see it, I'll remember my sister's fifteenth birthday party. The brownies. The pizza. Sitting at my grandparents' pool watching my sister and her friends having a blast.
The second is on the back of my right hand. It's three or four years old now, and I got it when I was playing tug-of-war with my dog, Zuma. She has a habit of pawing at your hand to try and get you to drop the rope toy, and on this particular occasion, I got scratched. Never thought I'd get a scar out of the ordeal, but here we are, I guess.
A lot of my characters have scars. As far as the Clouds Aflame series goes, Drostan has burn scars over most of his arm from when he fell into his fireplace as a five-year-old. Rowan has a mark under his jaw, but it's usually hidden by his plaid, his hair, or the low-light situations medieval peasants usually found themselves in. Alynn has a nice little mark on her shoulder from getting stabbed during the Battle of Faith.
A few of my more notable scars belong to characters outside of the Clouds Aflame series. The feisty Ojibwa protagonist of my crappy Wattpad historical romance has a cougar bite mark on her arm. And Chinua Zeren, the mentor figure of my yet-unwritten futuristic fantasy, has claw marks across her face from fighting a demon.
Unlike my own scars, which remind me of pleasant accidents, the scars these characters have remind them of their strength. Running Horse and Zeren can look in the mirror and remember everything they've been through. That no matter what happens to them next, they'll be fine. And lots of real-world people have similar scars. Like my dad, who used to have a mark from a third-degree electrical burn on his hand.
So maybe now you can see why I like scars. They either remind you of a fun time or your own strength. And both of those are noble things to keep in mind.
Did you get a scar from something that was supposed to be fun? Let me know in the comments below! God bless you, dear readers, and don't forget to Like us on Instagram!
M. J. Piazza is a Jesus-loving, dog-walking country girl who just so happens to write books.