picking scabs


Since the stroke, when I turn my head too fast I can lose my balance and fall. Luckily it has happened only three times in two years and there have been no major injuries, but it is disconcerting to have devolved to the status of an unsteady toddler. My nurse urges me to wear my sturdy shoes and use a cane when I leave the house, but these precautions do nothing to solve the problem of losing balance. The only thing that helps is not turning my head to satisfy my curiosity at something that has happened behind me.

The last time I fell was a couple weeks before Alex’s departure. The scabs of skinned knee and wrist are now completely healed without any permanent scars, healed so completely it is as if I had never fallen. I attribute this to the fact that I removed the scabs that formed, and after that, the tough skin that followed.

Sorry if I have grossed you out, but it seems to me there are parallels between the care of wounds and our mission of influencing society to become more compassionate towards young people who commit parricide. The healing doesn’t happen all at once, but “one person at a time”sort of how the edges of an injury heal before the center does.

Yesterday Wolfgang shared some “interesting findings” which those of us who have been dedicated to the cause of youth justice have heard a hundred times before. Yet it is easy to lose sight of the fact that new people are being drawn to our cause every day, and they need to be introduced to these basic facts—so everyone will one day share the same foundational facts. Lest we forget, we old-timers need to periodically be reminded of the basics, too.

I have faith that over time most wounds become smaller and smaller before they disappear altogether. But some wounds are deeper and more resistant to healing than others. I have not been successful so far in getting any surviving members of victims’ families to forgivebut I haven’t given up, either.

I appreciate that picking at a scab unveils the old wound and can create the impression that it will never heal… but it can also reveal progress with healing or the reasons why the wound hasn’t healed. Some people say that the surface should be kept raw so that the wound will heal properly.

What are your thoughts?


Groove of the Day

Listen to Marina and the Diamonds performing “Scab and Plaster”


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