Updated: Feb 13
Many years ago, when I was attending a fundamentalist church, I was told that I had a spirit of self-pity. Church members prayed that I would be delivered of this demon. Looking back, I had a lot of things to deal with at the time. I had just left home, had a new job where I did not fit, and mum was very ill. Quite frankly, I was in a mess.
At the time, this filled me with shame, and I pushed down these feelings, only to be left with anger at myself for not fitting in to the church.
The wisdom of years has helped me reframe this episode in my life. I was licking my wounds openly for the world to see. I wanted empathy and understanding. This was my way of getting attention to my pain. Sadly, I was left only with shame for having exposed my pain and my emotions were bound and gagged by religion.
Now I lick my wounds in private. The years have taught me that I will always have wounds. Some wounds never fully heal and many leave deep scars on our soul.
I have told you this story because I believe it is okay to have wounds. You will continue to lick these in some way or another. The deeper, unhealed will need licking from time to time. And that is okay. I figure, the deeper the wound, the more licking is required to ease the pain.
What do I mean by ‘licking’? I mean feeling regret, sadness, anger, or any emotion which stems from this pain is legitimate. And it is needed. Some things in our life leave a mark which is so deep that there will always be seepage. It may be from time to time, or it may be constant. At these times, you will need to mop up the mess oozing from the area.
This will require your focus for a time. You may only need a few moments to fix the issue, or perhaps you may need to spend a period alone. And that is perfectly fine with me.
You see, ignoring the wounds when it is their time to leak leads to dysfunctional behaviours. For me, it was overeating. For you, it could be bouts of uncontrolled anger, perfectionism, addiction of any type, or perhaps self-harm. Because, to leave these unattended when they are calling for your attention will inevitably end up in an increase of the pain and deepening of the wound.
So, I ask you today, ‘What are you hurting about? What wounds are you hiding behind unhealthy behaviours?’ Don’t let the pressure from society prevent you from attending to your wounds. You don’t have to be strong. You must be real. Feel free to message me if you need a chat.