This week, I’m focused on healing. Hernia surgery does that to you.
Tests, doctors, being driven to and from the surgery clinic and getting an IV, all the procedures that are so routine to the wonderful healers attending to you, but new and different to me. The daily routine has changed, and I am now focused on self care, and have time to heal.
In the past week, my life has focused on pill taking regimens, taking care with painful areas of the body, and the seemingly everpresent need to close my eyes and zone out. Basic bodily care procedures take on a new importance and challenges, as I sense all the healing that my body is engaged in.
Time and patience, yet also pushing myself a little, me testing and experimenting. And, listening to my body.
While occupying myself on the couch with books, laptop, and just watching the birds outside setting up their spring housekeeping and discovering the new blossoms on the wild currants, I came across an essay in the April 16 New Yorker, by Junot Diaz. He’s a noteworthy writer, who writes about serious issues. Yet, “The Silence” reveals a story he has not shared before.
He takes me on his journey, into his wounds, exposing his pain and anguish, and the challenges he has faced in his own personal healing journey. Uncomfortable, disquieting, yet so brave of him to take on pain from his childhood, and sharing his journey, and his healing experiences.
His courage and his honesty refreshes me, and helps me in my own journey of exploration and discovery. I invite you to read what he has to share with us. https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/04/16/the-silence-the-legacy-of-childhood-trauma
Healing starts from experiencing many wounds; healing comes from many sources.
Old wounds, scars nearly faded, remind me of good times, good friends, how I have changed and grown, evolving into who I am.
There are other wounds and stories, too. Nightmares, tragedies, events I have buried deep and kept away from my conscious self, yet they are present in the own dark ways. As acts of self-preservation, I have buried them deep, yet they continue to shape and form who I am today, an integral part of my self.
Sometimes, I go there, deep and occasionally brave, digging and probing, rediscovering, exploring dark corners and hearing again stories that need to be told. And, sometimes, I am ready to hear their meaning.
I am not alone on such a journey. Others do this work too, this self-discovery, this journey inward, downward, this course of study on themselves.
Others have led the way, and still others are following me, opening old pain to the light, part of our learning and growing.
The pursuit of who I am is a life long journey. I need to be brave. It is when I fear what I might discovery, and don’t pursue these self-discoveries, then I am not practicing self care and self love, but only when the time is right, and this exploration is truly for the good of me.
I must be brave and ask the hard questions I am called to answer. I must open the rusty lock and oil the squeaky hinges, and bring the light to see into the darkness.
Then and only then can I see the open wounds and the thorns that must be removed before the pain can begin to end and the healing begin. When the time is right, I must act and take charge of this part of the journey, and the healing.
I find strength in the courage of others in their journeys. There are many teachers and guides in this journey. From them, I have much to learn about courage and focus, that I am not alone, and that just taking a step can offer great rewards.
When the darkness becomes the light, and the shadows reveal their secrets, the weight falls off my shoulders and I can move ahead, becoming freer, less burdened, and lighter in spirit.
Mr. Diaz is one of my new heroes, one of those people who carries the lantern of truth into the darkness, and brings light to difficult conversations.
—-Neal Lemery, April 13, 2017