Digging for Healing


"I don't want to go to therapy!" I screamed in an attempt to silence my thoughts. "I don't want to learn my crazy."

I hid from it so long I didn't want to open that can. I had repressed memories and blocked experiences so successfully, I forgot they existed. A therapist wouldn't do anything but bring them to light. She'd open the closet and bring them out of the darkness. She'd peek under the bed to all the things that were hidden there, and ask me to pull everything out. I didn't want to pull everything out. I wanted to keep it all locked up where it was; where it belonged; underneath the thick layer of 'fake happy' dust, next to the frozen heart and my ego. 

"I don't want to learn my crazy!" The things that made me snap. The things that turned me into a little less of myself. I didn't want to know why, or how, or remember the whats. I wanted to continue to push past it all; working toward a better, brighter me - with all those things left behind in the darkness. 

"You need to go", my thoughts insisted. There was so much of me that needed to be cleansed. Purged. Purified. And I learned quickly, during prayer, that in order to clean those parts of me, they had to be brought into the light. The closet had to be cleared and the clutter gathering beneath my bed needed to be swept out (along with that frozen heart and my ego). 

All the things I was hiding from needed to be brought to the forefront. I needed to reintroduce myself to the painful memories and troubling truths, so I could cancel our friendship and send them packing. So I can let them know, for once and for all, I'm done and their power over me is too. 

Pretending the scars aren't there, isn't how you heal from them. Acting as though your past doesn't exist, isn't the way to learn from it. Burying your truths in a tightly sealed mason jar will not reap a beneficial harvest of change or growth. And, keeping your crazy locked in a closet, won't breed a new you. It's impossible to grow from that which you avoid. 

To heal, wholly and truly, you must tackle the very things that have terrified you for so long. You must grow comfortable tasting the salt of your tears and work to eradicate the tragic effect these moments have had on your life. On your being. You must be willing to express these emotions and expose your crazy. To dig in the dirt and handle everything discovered at the deep roots of your insecurities and sadness. 

I wasn't ready to get dirty. But I had to. 

As ugly as the scars may be, I learned I had to rip off the band-aid. I learned I had to unbury those memories. It was the only way to break the chains that have kept me from growth, love and joy. The chains that told me I wasn't good enough and never will be. The chains with the 200-pound weight dragging me to the bottom of the ocean telling me not to swim; telling me not to fight. 

I wasn't ready to fight. But I had to.

You'll have to fight, too. 

You'll fight your terrifying truths. You'll fight the pain of the process. You'll fight your emotions for their empty promises of your I'm-fines and its-okays. You may even fight your therapist (or God) for making you do all of this. For making you find things within you that you didn't know were still there. For making you reignite the flames you worked so hard to put out. But you'll thank them (your therapist and God) for unlocking a new level in your life. For helping begin the process of a newer, cleaner, freer you. For draining your spirit of all the negative clutter, and making room for new memories. For better memories. For being one step closer to healing. 

"I don't want to learn my crazy!" I yelled. But I learned my crazy. And I learned that I am not my crazy. I am new. I am whole. I am healing. 

It's your turn. 

"A lot of people say they want to get out of pain, but they are not willing to make healing a high priority. They are not willing to look inside and see the source of their pain in order to deal with it." - Lindsay Wagner. 

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