(Oh Coldplay – if only you could!)
Do you think that one person can really help another to erase scars, put together broken pieces, eradicate hurt, and replace fear and self depreciation with positivity, smiles and self love?
I used to think this was possible. I used to believe if you really loved someone you could make all their pain go away. Sure it would take time, tears perhaps, effort. But if you really loved someone, if you saw through all the layers of defensiveness, the hard work would be worth it.
Fast forward to the present, I have not completely lost my above faith in the healing power of love and time. Love is very powerful and I still do believe that with patience and unconditional love, you can help someone out of the hurt hole. BUT this cannot work until said individual is ready to come out himself/ herself. Or if said individual thinks you’ll still be there waiting, when they’re eventually ready to come out. If they think you’re gonna leave them hanging they ain’t going nowhere mate.
When someone has been hurt so badly that they need to be fixed, they twist things. They see things in a different way. They push people away. They are scared. They are defensive, even offensive at times. They don’t understand why they do these things, they don’t want to do these things, but they have to. Because if they don’t, they run the risk of being hurt again. Of being broken that bit more. An image of a little sparrow with a broken wing springs to mind.
A sad but spiteful little sparrow.
The point is, this method of self protection is self destructive. This pessimism, this inability to believe that not everyone is a douchebag, just leads to isolation and more hurt. It makes ‘you’ push people away when ‘you’ get scared, and it pushes the real ‘you’ beneath all those layers of self pity and extrapolated loathing. Instead of being that funny and silly girl from uni who would laugh with her voice, eyes and shoulders and dance without a care in the world, you end up being a sad armoured armadillo that walks with her head down, perpetually looking over her shoulder, tearful but ready to snap.
The frustrating thing is that said armadillo didn’t do this to herself. Said armadillo was full of life and zest. Said armadillo just wanted to be happy. Said armadillo’s happiness was burned out of her, one betrayal, one tear at a time. She tried, she was strong you know, she took the bullsh*t, she forgave. But being strong can be exhausting. Even then said armadillo escaped with her last bit of strength, but the damage was done. The layers of the metal shell had taken their place, protecting the sole wisp of self confidence remaining beneath them.
Now obviously the armadillo is a metaphor and could be a male armadillo too. My point is that most human beings are not born scared or nasty, we all just want to live and have fun. We want to be happy, even better if we find someone to be happy with 🙂 But life, and other people get in the way. Being with the wrong partner, or the wrong group of friends can cause immense damage to a sensitive soul (ie to anyone and everyone, I believe everyone is sensitive to some degree) and this my friends is what causes the fear of being hurt (again), pain, self depreciation, anxiety, insecurity, depression, passive aggression, spitefulness, all the above etc. It could also result in a ‘f*ck the world’ attitude too. They all boil down to the same things, struggle to trust and the perceived need for self protection.
Self protection borne out of being hurt is dangerous. It’s roots are understandable, but it is dangerous because it’s personification is difficult to understand – especially in a situation where someone reverts to it constantly in a relationship. It could manifest as tears, running away, pushing away, victimisation, lying, apathy, self pity. All these and more. If you’re lucky, anyone who cares about you will initially be patient with these exhibits, they will try and understand. They will try to listen and calm you and fix you. But it’s not that simple. You can’t rely on them alone, they can’t carry all their baggage and yours as well. You have to fix yourself too. You have to realise there is a problem in order to fix it. You need time to do this. You need to want to do this.
You patient partner or friend may be generous with their time and kindness at first, but it’s understandable that this may soon wear thin. It’s human nature. The ones that do stick around are gems, but they are rare I’m afraid. This is why you can’t rely on others. Yes their love and support can help to show that you have worth, that you are not a piece of poo. But you have to believe this yourself first!!!
Remember that we all struggle, we all have baggage, we all have been hurt to some extent. Some people bounce back before the armadillo shell sets in, others are stuck behind the shield for much much longer. Neither is right or wrong, it’s down to the individual. And mr/ miss individual it’s okay. It’s okay to be hurt and to take your time nursing that hurt. But don’t make others suffer for it. Remember that you can come out if it, don’t push away those that love you. Treat yourself to happiness because you deserve it. Try and smile because positive thinking is very powerful and will eventually help you to feel better. Believe that you can be happy, and that you are worthy of said happiness. Actively tell yourself this daily.
Most of all, remember that genuine love from another person is a beautiful thing, it is worth fighting for. But love for yourself is priceless, it is beauty defined, it is worth living for.
Self love, is the only love that will fix you.