CREDOS: The scar — III

My hand rose to my face. The scar confirmed it; I was ugly. The room swam before me as my eyes filled with tears. The doctor pulled a rolling stool up next to me and sat down. His knees almost touched mine. His voice was low and soft.

“Let me tell you what I see. I see a beautiful woman. Not a perfect woman, but a beautiful woman. Lauren Hutton has a gap between her front teeth. Elizabeth Taylor has a tiny, tiny scar on her forehead,” he almost whispered. Then he paused and handed me a mirror. “I think to myself how every remarkable woman has an imperfection, and I believe that imperfection makes her beauty more remarkable because it assures us she is human.” He pushed back the stool and stood up. “I won’t touch it. Don’t let anyone fool with your face. You are delightful just the way you are. Beauty really does come from within a woman. Believe me. It is my business to know.” Then he left.

I turned to the face in the mirror. He was right. Somehow, over the years, that ugly child had become a beautiful woman. Since that day in his office, as a woman who makes her living speaking before hundreds of people, I have been told many times by people of both

sexes that I am beautiful. And, I know I am. There is no need to fool myself anymore. When I changed how I saw myself, others were forced to change how they saw me as well. The plastic surgeon didn’t remove the scar on my face; he removed the scar on my heart. — (Concluded)