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We humans thirst, crave, and ache the same way. We all want to be seen, heard, understood, appreciated, and desired. We seek a greater purpose, to be a part of something bigger than ourselves and to know a love that transcends space and time. These are the many traits that bind us together, and yet we’re too fixated on our individual defects to notice.
If something is harming an individual, it ultimately affects the whole, similar to how the death of a single tree in the forest affects the entire canopy. When we think poorly of ourselves or are self-loathing, the beautiful whole that we’re a part of feels it too.
The conflict we create with others usually stems from some deeper conflict within ourselves. It usually stems from a wound we neglected to heal, like a broken bone that never got realigned or held in place with a cast. Blood may clot and scars may form, but beneath it, the pain from all that is left unhealed lingers.
The same is true for pain that lives in the heart and spirit. If never healed properly, it lies dormant, waiting for a ripe moment to expose itself.
When we ignore our wounds, it becomes easy to bleed on those who didn’t hurt us. This is why healing them is so crucial. We project onto others how we feel internally, so if all we feel is sorrow then we are more likely to respond according to that feeling. Likewise, if our internal world is gleaming with rays of blissful sunshine, our outer world will not only feel it too, but it will be more inclined to match it.
Perhaps if we can learn to somehow mend ourselves, we can someday mend the world.
I do not believe that any person should deny their emotions or sweep them under the rug for the sake of optimism. In fact, I am vouching for quite the opposite. When we feel the bitterness of pain, sadness, or anger, we need to feel it to our core. We need to embrace it rather than push it away, because when we’re done confronting our darkest traumas, we can finally begin to heal.
The methods or timelines are not going to be the same for everyone, but sometimes just being aware of our unhealed parts is enough. Sometimes, just learning to let go of a moment that dug its thorns into us for years is enough. Sometimes just forgiving ourselves for our wrongdoings is enough. Sometimes just loving ourselves despite these twisted wounds is enough. Because if we can treat ourselves with such compassion, we can treat others with it too, and compassion might just be the antidote we’ve all been looking for.