What if birthmarks are the places that actually killed us in our past life? Like there’s this girl from school whose birthmark is a line on her neck. What if her throat was cut? I know this guy who has his birthmark on his whole left cheek. What if he was shot? My little sisters birthmark is a line straight down her stomach. What if she died on the operating table?

10

IMDB’s top ten highest voted episodes of Teen Titans [insp]

This is very long but I don’t care. 

I’ve known my sister, Hannah, her entire life. I met her the day she was born. I was there when everyone first saw the purple and blue veins on her left cheek. But, I don’t remember seeing them for the first time. I don’t remember giving them much thought. For the past fifteen years, I can recall a handful of days I or anyone in my family have spared a thought to those veins on her cheek.  I have spent much more time being jealous of her natural beauty.

But, today is one of those other days, one of that small handful. Today my sister shares a story and it’s not the first of its kind. She sits on the kitchen counter, eats an apple and says that it was photo day for her soccer team. She describes posing for a profile shot with her left cheek facing the camera.

“Don’t you want to face the other way?”  The camerawoman asks as politely as possible.

“No, I’m fine.” She says and holds her ground.

“Are you sure?”

“No, I’m good.”

And then, having given up her crusade, “That’s some bruise! Did you get that in a soccer game?”

“No,” and I know she must have shared an awkward smile and laugh, “It’s a birthmark.”

And I’m sure the woman was not expecting that and I am in no way attempting to ridicule her for her words. What I am trying to do, is revel in the bravery and self-confidence of my fifteen-year-old sister. My sister, who has stood in front of countless people, both children and adults, and dared to be proud of her appearance.

“Is that a tattoo?” “No, it’s just a birthmark.”

“What happened to your face?” “It’s a birthmark.”

“Did someone hit you?” “No.”

“You know, when you get older, you could get plastic surgery. It would be like it was never there.”

I have only spared a handful of days like this, contemplating my sister’s appearance and strength of character. I do not take notice of the purple and blue on her face. But, I know she thinks about it every day. I know she sees it. I hope she continues to embrace it.

6

I love her smile.
I hate her crooked teeth.
I love her hair.
I hate her 1960s haircut.
I love her knees.
I hate her knobby knees.
I love this heart-shaped birthmark she has on her neck.  
I hate her cockroach-shaped splotch on her neck.
I love the way she sometimes licks her lips before she talks.
I hate the way she smacks her lips before she talks.
I love the sound of her laugh.
I hate the way she sounds when she laughs.