I realized yesterday that many of the blogs I’ve been writing have been in the category of ‘Healing’, much of their content talks about ‘healing’. I feel as if I’ve experienced some healing, there have been changes, growth.
Recently a friend said “I applaud your healing desires. I am sure your healing will happen when you are willing to accept others with their warts and zits and to accept yourself the same way.”
I decided to research ‘healing’, to learn more about what it means. What I found most often was:
1. a. to make sound or whole
b. to restore to health
2. a. to cause to be overcome
b. to patch up
3. to restore to original purity or integrity
to return to a sound state
‘Healing’ can be used to describe recovery of physical, emotional, mental, or spiritual well-being. Healing allows those parts of you to revert to their ‘normal’ state: A state of rest, a state without conflict, a state of peace. How we reach that state depends on choice. There are a myriad of possibilities for what this natural state could be. There is no one right answer.
Even though my friend’s opinion included the phrase “will happen when“, implying healing hasn’t begun, or won’t be completed until some other factor occurs, only I am capable of determining for myself whether healing is happening, based on what healing means to me and the choices I make about how to achieve my understanding of ‘healing’.
I believe that I am achieving a state of ‘rest’, ‘less conflict’, a sense of more ‘peace’, as I’m learning to understand my past, how it has impacted my adult life, the control I have over my own life and the decisions I make, rather than allowing ‘old tapes’ to make decisions for me. I’m learning to protect me, without walling others out, to appreciate who I am and to understand my identity beyond the expectations of others.
One of the things from my childhood that was terribly difficult to overcome was my abuser’s constant undermining of my confidence by insisting that she knew what I was thinking, she knew how I felt, she knew what I wanted, regardless of how aggressively I denied her accusations and assumptions. No matter how much I objected to her assumptions and accusations, she simply wouldn’t accept what I was saying, risking arguing with her, trying to defend my thoughts and actions was an exhausting undertaking.
At first, I nearly allowed this recent trigger to undermine the progress I was making, but I was able to quickly identify how I was feeling, what I was allowing and caught myself. I sought clarification during which time I realized I was hurting myself with another person’s opinion, I didn’t believe it was an accurate assessment, retrieved similar experiences and how I’d handled them from my memory and made a decision about how to handle the situation. That process, in and of itself, demonstrates to me that growth and healing are taking place.
A few months ago, I would have been devastated by this particular trigger, allowed the emotions and ‘old tapes’ from the past to overwhelm me and fallen into a deep depression, most likely foregoing my self-help efforts, feeling a failure. Rather than following old patterns, I disengaged, I did suffer a temporary ‘collapse’, but I didn’t allow myself to wallow there, I sought clarification, reminded myself that an opinion is not a statement of fact and made the decision that I would trust my feelings, trust myself, because no one knows what’s in my heart or mind better than me.
I’m healing… I’m making progress, I’m learning to take care of myself.