No, this post has nothing to do with the idiotic shows “Jersey Shore” or any of the “Housewives of ….” series. 🙂
When I played football it was a big deal to be seen as “tough”. One of the ways this was seen was the amount of bruising you had after a practice, or especially after a big game.
I know I know, such a testosterone-y thing, but hey, that’s the way it was (and I suspect still is).
When you were practicing in my day you wore a practice jersey, which was basically a “net” jersey which covered you, but had large holes in it to allow for circulation of air (a big deal in the Florida heat and humidity, especially during three-a-days). If you hit someone hard enough and “wrapped up” in the correct manner it would leave an imprint on your sides or arms, basically tattooing the net jersey onto your skin, which would look like a bunch of dots lining your body. I would call these “Jersey Scars”. Not sure where I heard that term, or if I came up with it, but I have always called it that (often having to explain what exactly it means to others).
When I hear someone tell of something in their life that has “left a mark” that shows a little but is often mostly hidden from view I call that a Jersey Scar also. Even though you see some of it, the dots lining your skin for example, the bruise is often much bigger and lays just under the skin, and doesn’t go away as quick as the one that you can see. Most of us have these scars. Something that has happened in our lives that appears at times to people as small marks on us, but more often than not is much larger. The problem is when someone hits that bruise unknowingly, pushing that button, because there is no outward signs. It happens to me still, even though I think I have handled most of them. It’s a wake up call to me saying these things are still present and still need first aid and to be tended to every once in a while.
Some are little things (growing up with little money has given me issues with people that have always had money and don’t understand or empathize with what it is like to have nothing. Not their fault entirely. They just don’t KNOW.) and some are bigger (things I won’t go into on this type of platform) that have effected the way I am with my family, my kids, even my work. I liken it to be like there is a dead spot in me that refuses to give in totally to something or someone. Andrew and I have spoken about this on the show, that there is something in us that won’t give that 100% in a race or training, holding back that small 10% so we have a reason for not performing. The same goes in life and love where you never give all of what you have because, if (when) it fails you don’t lose 100% of who you are.
Hey, I know it’s a hard way to be, but let me talk it through.
Ongoing first aid is needed for these bruises. They never go away fully. Some people claim they are strong and can handle it, but they can’t. The issues are always there, hiding just under the surface, and make themselves known at the slightest prodding. Some of us are more open about these scars and bruises. It doesn’t make us weaker … I would venture to say it makes us stronger because we know they are there and deal with them openly.
So, if you happen to hit one of these bruises on me, and I react to it in a shocking way, try to understand it is not entirely aimed at you. In fact, it’s probably not you at all, but some snippet of my past that you woke up with an innocent comment. It’s an internal struggle I have administering this first aid to myself. Sometimes we need help because we can’t quite reach the injury to fully heal it.