My second black eye (see That eye for the first one) earned me a variety of responses.
This one came a few years after I was married.
I stood at the checkout counter of the grocery store with two kids, a full load of groceries, and a deep black swoosh under my eye.
The clerk took my check while staring at the cash register keys and returned my receipt while studying the scale below me.
As I walked to the car, a woman met my eyes (this was in a friendly small town) and then studied the pavement intently.
But a neighbor, who had just arrived in the parking lot, popped out of her car. “What on earth happened to you?”
At church the next day, a friend wandered up to me with a grin on his face. “So does Matt look as bad as you do?”
Matt’s my husband and our friends knew his character pretty well.
But I had to confess over and over that a male member of the family had done this to me.
Here’s the rest of the story:
I was tucking our younger son, 3 years old at the time, into bed and leaned down to kiss him on the forehead just as he moved forward to give me a hug. His hard head crashed into my cheek.
Let me tell you that such a collision paints the blackest swoosh you’ve ever seen.
My experience was simple but it gave me more empathy for women with black eyes not so innocently delivered.