Surfacing After Silence

Life. After.

a jigsaw puzzle of a heart


The actual human heart has four chambers, all fitting together nicely and coordinating their contractions to result in blood and oxygen being pumped throughout the body,  maintaining life.  While there are serious problems that can go wrong with the heart (as in my case), medical science and technology has come a long way in being able to fix a significant number of these problems.

The figurative heart isn’t so lucky.  There is no science, no technology to take the pieces of a broken heart and sew them back into their proper place.  No medication to take that corrects the problem.

The heart breaks.  Even while the physical heart may be beating along in it’s reliable pattern, the heart of the soul can shatter into fragments, sometimes making the physical heart ache in response.

Recently, I experience something, the specifics of which I will keep to myself, that has resulted in the sensation of me being shattered.  I feel like if I had a special pair of glasses (I watch too many episodes of “Bones”), I could look around and there on the floor I would find shadows, parts of me that have broken off and are now just scattered pieces with jagged edges.  Waiting to be put back together.  Waiting for someone with a good eye to come along and look closely and say, “Yup, this edge matches that piece over there.  Let’s get you joined back together.”  And then someone would be standing ready with a needle and thread to stitch the two pieces together.  And this would continue until I was whole again.  And then everything would be better.

But it doesn’t work like that.  No one can see those broken shadows but me, no matter what type of special glasses they wear.  Those shadows are all mine, and it is my responsibility to take the pieces and put them back together again.  No one can do that for me.  People can support me and encourage me, but those pieces are mine, and only I know how they fit together.

I find that I’m stuck, however.  I feel as if I am picking up each individual piece and saying to it, “Yes, I know you.  I feel you.  I need you.  But I don’t know how to fix you.”

I’ve experienced this before, and I know time has a lot to do with it, and this specific instance has only been a matter of a couple of days.  Journaling helps me.  Writing in general helps me.  The peace found in knitting helps, as if making something beautiful from a string of yarn is the equivalent of making something beautiful of the shadows on the floor.

I also know I’m not the only one who feels broken at times.  I know that in the throes of an eating disorder, one often feels broken or somehow not quite whole.  I’m here to tell you today that you are not alone in this, but we often keep the broken parts of ourselves hidden and silent because that is what society wants: the new and shiny and whole.

So my questions for my readers today is this:  What do you do to help yourself when you feel broken?  What helps you feel whole again?

I am hoping that people comment, that we can all help each other and support each other.

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August 4, 2011 - Posted by | bipolar disorder, Body Image, depression, Eating Disorders, faith, feelings, heart, identity | , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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