Some people shield their hearts in a shroud by being aloof and creating enough distance and space between them and others so that hurt finds it very difficult to penetrate, while others live with their hearts unarmoured; an open target to hurt and betrayal; until one day, broken and wounded beyond repair, they retreat behind a plastered smile and emotionless eyes that have long dried up from overflowing for too long.
Some wounds run deep, and though on the surface it appears to be healed, and the scab has dried and fell off, and all that remains is a feint and tiny scar; the skin still tingles in places as it grazes unexpectedly against something or the other. In the same way, the heart, though it continues to beat, it still flinches when it is faced with an unexpected experience and remembers a hurt.
In life, experiences undoubtedly change you! They break you, wound you, disappoint you. Our instinct is always to protect ourselves, so we build walls and fortresses an bear a heavy lock on our hearts. Careful who we let in…difficulty in parting with those we have locked away in the valves of our beating life force. But these same experiences that inflicts a struggle also builds us, strengthens us and teaches us things we didn’t know before.
Sometimes we think we have conquered an obstacle, that we’ve gained closure on the way we were treated, that we have learnt what we need to in order to move on. But those lingering feelings, the tingling emotions a sign that the healing is incomplete. Sure enough I have learnt…that people don’t value relationships the way I do, that perhaps I invest too much into friendships, that it frequently leads me to becoming a doormat and very often; despite my best intentions, I am used as a vessel for personal gain. This has most certainly made me weary, cautious, hesitant, perhaps even a little emotionally shut off. But walking around with an armoured heart also weighs you down. Sometimes we pull the protective harness so tight that it loses its ability to beat in a way that is natural to us, and in so doing we lose a bit of our essence…
The apologies we yearn for don’t always come. Sometimes they are replaced with grand gestures laced heavy in tradition. Sometimes all we will get are words dancing off the tongue – minus acknowledgement, sincerity, humility. Sometimes this also hurts because it is so far removed from how we live our lives. But sometimes we need to forgive anyway. Not because we were asked, but because it lightens our own burden and clears our path for the journey we have yet to undertake…
Thanks for reading!