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I had literally fried my back. I was maybe seven years old and had never experienced so much pain in my life. The beautiful summer sun had turned on me, scorching my flesh to the point I could barely move my shoulders. My skin was tight, stretched beyond its limit; I was sure I would simply break open if I moved too quickly.

That night I slept on my stomach, Bactine sprayed as a salve.

A couple days later and I appeared normal. The brunt of the burn was gone, but under my shirt, it still hurt. 

I couldn't stop existing. I needed to eat. I needed to drink. There was TV to watch and siblings to tease. Although I was in pain, I also wanted to participate. I didn't want to be left out. 

And so I tried to play. And it would work for a while - until someone accidently slapped me on my back, or the dog jumped on me, or I bumped into a wall - and I'd be shocked by the intense pain that coursed through my body. It was as if, for just a second, I managed to forget I was hurt, only to be cruelly reminded without warning.

I looked fine on the outside, but under my clothes, my skin hurt.

I look fine on the outside, but under my skin, my soul hurts.

Photo Credit: Chuck Beautiful


Anna See said…
So very very true and real.
Anonymous said…
It's hard to watch others move on while you are still so hurt and raw. I've followed your blog for a while now, and just wanted to say thank you. Thank you for being open and real and honest. For sharing Avery with the world so that the world might know God. Thank you.
This is a chapter in your book. What a beautifully written analogy. And such a good reminder to people that you cannot know what people are going through. Perhaps Hannah's roommate was hurting too bad from a burn and found herself unable to extend herself. Anyway, the thing about a sunburn is that it reminds you of your time in the sun... and the sun is a beautiful thing even though it can really hurt. xo
Brenna said…
I think this is all you can do. And you are a master of metaphors.

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