Friend, when we are heartbroken or disappointed, or in anyway feel damage emotionally, as we move forward we will stride to protect against any further potential damage.
This reminds me of when we suffer a physical injury, such as a broken arm. We take the time to heal by immobilizing the bone so that it can heal.
Eventually, when we have the cast removed, and it is deemed that we can use our once damaged limb, there can be some hesitation to do things with that appendage for fear that it will hurt or be uncomfortable.
When I badly broke my arm it was in a cast for several months. Once the cast was removed my arm, while ‘healed’, wasn’t the same as it was prior to the breakage.
It was tender, weak, and required physical therapy in order to regain full strength and mobility again. It wasn’t a pleasant experience. It was, at times, painful and hard.
My instinct, even after the lengthy process of healing and rehabilitation, was to hold my arm against my body, similarly to how the cast had immobilized it for the months prior. My automatic impulse was to protect my arm at all costs.
However, my natural instinct was counter to what I actually needed to do to strengthen my arm in order to regain the full use of it.
What I actually needed to do was use my arm, tests its limits, strengthen and stretch the muscles. Which I finally did.
If I were to look at an x-ray I would see that my bone still carries the reminder of that long ago damage. There is no way to un-break my limb. However, it did heal and is stronger now than it was prior to the injury.
However, it wouldn’t be if I hadn’t done the necessary work to heal and acquire full use of it again.
Our hearts and emotions have to do likewise, friend.
I went through a very traumatic break up a year ago. It was unexpected and I had to say goodbye to the family that I created with this person.
Afterwards I had to spend time healing my broken heart. Gathering all of the broken pieces and fitting them back together. I had to tend to the wounds and ensure that my heart healed properly. It has not always been comfortable to face the damage, or to do the necessary work required to ensure that I don’t repeat unhealthy patterns.
The wounds from that loss will always be there, you’ll see them if you looked closely, as my heart will always carry a reminder. Just as there is no way to un-break a bone, there is also no way to un-break my heart.
Now that my heart has healed, my natural instinct is quite similar to what I experienced with my arm when I held it close to my body.
I want to erect barriers to prevent any from getting too close, stifle emotions and prevent them from growing into full-blown feels.
My instincts are to protect my heart, to not open up or allow people close for fear that I’ll get hurt again.
Friend, Unless I do open up and take the time test the limits of my heart, versus protecting it, nurturing it, preventing it from other hurt, I will never allow myself to love and open up again, which is the whole purpose of, not only the heart, but the human existence.
Our lives should be about connecting and forming bonds and experiences, not avoiding them.
So, friend, hopefully someday I’ll find myself in a situation where I’ll know that my heart is stronger and fuller and better than it was prior to the breaking.
For now, though, I’ll have to open it up by degrees and allow someone in.
Your Trusted Friend ❤