The Bruise On My Face


At first, there was no change at all.

But when I touched my face it hurt only in one spot. I knew it was a deep bruise. That sharp ping to the touch gave it away. I knew there was no real damage. There was no chips to the bone. But when looking at it in the mirror, the color was still good. I thought,”Well, maybe this won’t be so bad.”

The next day there was a soft yellow pigmentation that crept across half of my face. On day three, it turned into the color of what I can describe as ochra. Day four? It was a horseradish mustard color. It was so dark that make-up did not quite work the way it should have. Then the mustard morphs to light olive green to straight olive. I felt like a freaking painter’s pallet.

It hurt. It hurt a lot. It hurt when I tried to apply make-up to cover it up. While it was healing it itched. I wanted to scratch it so bad, but I was afraid to touch it. I didn’t want to destroy the make-up that I strategically placed. I didn’t want anyone to know what happened. I didn’t want to be seen. I didn’t want the questions.


Because people would think he hit me, of course. I could hear the jokes already. “Ha, ha, what happened? Did you say No? Did you say something about his uh… mother? Did you take the remote control?” The reality is nine times out of ten I would have thought that too. But I would have never made fun or made jokes about it. Those kind of cringe “jokes” makes me nauseous.

It’s a pretty natural deduction in our violent world to think that a person with a facial injury might have been hit. But the reality is, when you have a bruise on your face, it’s no joke.

For me? I had a smile on my face to the world. But the truth was no amount of makeup could hide what was really going on inside my own violent world.

Tracy Etheridge Sig

2 Responses to “The Bruise On My Face”

  1. Darcea May 8, 2007 at 2:53 pm #

    Thanks for writing such a powerful message. I too was a victim of abuse for 15 years, until I finally, with my four children, got the strength to leave him. It’s a sad world when you feel you have no one to talk to, no one who can help and you just have to find the strength within. I wish you peace and happiness.

  2. Tracy May 8, 2007 at 7:42 pm #

    Darcea –
    Thank you for your wonderful comments. I am so proud to hear that you had the strength to get up and leave. Not only for yourself but also for your children. Not only it is probably the most difficult thing you will ever have to do in your life but it is also the most powerful. I am glad to hear that you to found the strength. We all have it but it takes some time to find it. I am so glad that you did. I to wish you all the peace and happiness in the world. Please come back and visit again.

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