“Healing for a broken heart.” That - for what it’s worth - is the most common search that brings newcomers to my blog every month and has been ever since it was first launched. Ironically enough, it was my search for that very thing that prompted me to start this site back when I did. I thought then that if I could put all my rants and ramblings – however incoherent they can be at times - out there in one place for others to respond to, I would be able to sort through the confusion in my heart, I’d be able to unload some of the baggage of my past and leave it behind, regardless of the fact that it would undeniably be preserved somewhere in the blogosphere for others experiencing similar circumstances to stumble on from time to time. And in so many ways, it’s worked.
But the question I find myself asking is whether or not I ever really answered the question I posed for myself – whether or not I ever got it “all figured out.” And I realize now that there are seldom times when we really do have anything all figured out, but I’d like to say, it’s definitely given me some insights.
How many times has it been said that “time heals all wounds?” It’s the ultimate cure-all. Just wait, sit tight, have patience and time will take care of the rest. What about: “This too shall pass?” Is there a grandmother on the planet that hasn’t fallen back on this turn of phrase? But how many times have we heard it said and rolled our eyes before reasoning away as to why it didn’t apply to our specific situation? (“You just don’t understand…” / "It's easier said than done.") Was grandma really just trying to shut us up and force us to move on with our lives rather than cry in our coffee? Or was there actually something at the heart of what she was saying?
After countless failed attempts at happiness, relationships with shelf lives shorter than skim milk – long-distance, short-distance, hardly-any distance scenarios that never seemed to work out, going from fearful to fearless and back again in a matter of months, it certainly seems I’ve run the gambit and shored up for myself a wealth of life lessons before I found a way to make it work with the right person. And if I learned anything it’s that it takes a lot more than time to heal old wounds – though time is certainly a factor. It takes perspective. It takes wanting to be over the past, being ready to give it up and get back up again. It takes a lot of patience and a lot of prayer.
So maybe there really is no prescription out there to be found. Maybe the search terms entered will not yield anymore of a cure-all now than the clichés I referenced earlier. But sometimes, that's just life. And it’s like anything else. Some of us can fall down and get back up again without a whimper, others are more fragile and require some time before they can get back on their feet, and sadly there are some that fall and never walk again. But the key isn’t to just let time pass and rely on that alone to make all wrongs right. It’s to acknowledge that time has passed, realize what has changed and accept the things you can’t control, allow yourself the necessary time to grieve, but find the stregnth to carry on, to try and be prepared to fail again, and keep a positive outlook that - of all things and as corny as it sounds - there will be “a better day,” even if it’s not tomorrow. So even if it seems it only comes full circle to another list of to-do’s, another stockpile of comforting words that do not yet seem to apply, it may not matter at the end of the day, if it gets you through. One day at a time.
I’ve learned to trust God with the things I can’t control and take responsibility for the things I can. It’s been a long battle and I’ve fallen away more times than I can recall, but in the end - no matter what the outcome - I’ve something much stronger to fall back on than mere words, a source of comfort and strength more enduring than the most ancient of adages. And my heart goes out to those who stumble and fall, and find themselves broken, never knowing the enormous healing power of a little faith. I can only hope to share it in these feeble entries. And pray that those who search for healing will also find it.