Monday, December 7, 2015
Understanding Invisible Wounds
There are times in our lives we suffer a blow of some kind. Something unexpected, something huge, something big and something totally invisible to the outside world. No one understands the pain because they can’t clearly see it. Because they cannot see it, they expect you to perform normally, behave as if everything is fine and that all is well in your world. They cannot understand what you are going through.
Sometimes we have to speak up, we have to tell people very private things we’d prefer no one know so that the invisible becomes visible and we can gain some compassion and understanding for the invisible burden that we carry. In a way, we all carry an invisible burden of some sort. I too carry one and although I’m not entirely comfortable sharing it in this blog, it is one I will carry for sometime. It causes fatigue unimaginable, it causes pain and discomfort but you wouldn’t see it from the outside. But it is here on the inside.
I write this not so much for myself as I feel courageous, I have conviction and a fierce voice able to be used to protect myself as need be. But, not everyone has that. Watch for the signs and listen to people. They may be politely telling you something very private when they tell you they cannot do something, they cannot celebrate, go out and have fun with you, help you move, help you do this or that because they’ve got their own private battle going on that may be temporary or permanent. Don't force people to be as you think they should be. That's not fair, it's not right and it is completely selfish of you to do so.
I know all too well about invisible broken legs having many family members suffer something similar. My heart goes out to their struggles and to all who struggle with the invisible pain they carry. My message to them too – be gentle with yourselves even if no one else will, even when everyone expects too much from you, and even when everyone expects you to act like a normal human being. Sometimes we are not normal or cannot function normally for various reasons and that is okay. What is not okay is other’s judgment of things they do not understand so make them understand and you can do that without full disclosure if that is your preference.
You’ve been given a voice. Use it to protect and preserve you because you matter so much. Do what you can do for you every day. Be unafraid. Be as strong as you can be and then rest if you must, retreat if you must and be quiet if you want to. Those who stand by you are your people. Hold them close and love them. Those who won’t stand by and support you, love them and let them go (sometimes this just means hold no more expectations of support so you are no longer hurt by them unnecessarily).
Life is hard sometimes. But we can get through our invisible wounds or not. The main point is that you deserve support, understanding and compassion for what you go through. If you cannot get it from those around you, please give it to yourself. Take what you need to be okay in terms of time for yourself for healing, solitude if need be and rest when you need to. This life is like your ship. You are the captain, not anyone else. May your God or Goddess keep you, bless you and fill you with all the healing strength you can hold.
©2015 Jaie Hart (photo/words)