She grew up intrinsically understanding her parents’ pain, bravely carrying the heavy trunk of her parents’ shame. Believing herself responsible for fixing, healing, loving her parents’ wounds until they were whole again. When she could not fully hold the pain that was not hers to hold and she saw the wounds were still there she felt so much pain. She tried harder, loved more, balanced her parents’ pain on her shoulders, head, arms and toes. She would only allow herself the privilege of seeing herself when she had completed the work of healing the pain in her parents. But despite her efforts, as soon as she had one wound held together the next was gaping. She ran from wound to wound, until her limbs were tied in knots holding together all of the broken that was not hers to hold. Now and then she fell down, with a smaller or larger crash. Her pain seeped out a little, but oh how the guilt stabbed at her for failing in her mission. Up again, keep holding all the broken pieces together.
Until one day she crashed for good. Her own wound deeply infected, the puss oozing out in torrents. With bravery she started to let go of her parents broken pieces and embarked on the awful realisation that she could not fix them. Their wounds were not hers to fix. But no one ever taught her that as a child. As she looked at herself she couldn’t rightly see herself at all, couldn’t feel her pain. She understood somehow that she herself might have her own wound, but it was covered in a thick veil, a fog of numbness, very uncertain if she had the right to be herself at all, let alone the right to be wounded. The acute pain that had not belonged to her, that she could feel with great astuteness. The guilt at leaving the trunk of pain at her parents feet where it belonged she could feel like a stabbing knife. But her own wounds, her own brokenness, seeing herself, that is hard, that privilege is finally hers to embrace. She can now learn to hold and love herself so much until her own wounds can heal.
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