One of the hazy, numb, incoherent days of my depression stage, I was doing my usual “beach wave” look and dropped my curling iron mid curl. My older daughter had been sitting right beside me on the floor by our full length mirror, so to move would have potentially put her in harm’s way. Plus, I really didn’t have the energy required for self-preservation. So I sat motionless as the sizzling hot iron dropped in slow motion on to my forearm.
As soon as the iron was at a complete stop and safe to grab, I picked it off of my smoldering arm, set it back down and walked to the sink to begin first aid with 5 minutes of cold water. My daughter was upset. “Why didn’t you move?! Why didn’t you scream?! Oh my gosh! Aren’t you in pain?! What’s wrong with you? Wait. Did it even hit you? Why are you so calm?” I suppose she was confused by my lack of appropriate response. Or, rightly, my lack of any response at all. (I did tell you I was numb…)
Truth is, it hurt so much it didn’t really hurt. The pain I did feel and the curling iron shaped wound I saw forming on my skin actually helped. The only thought I has was “This doesn’t even compare to what’s going on inside of me- my heart is cauterized.”
A few days after the curling iron incident my younger daughter bumped into my arm and scraped off part of the forming scab on accident, revealing very tender skin underneath. (That actually did hurt!) Then it dawned on me. My surface emotions are hardened – crusted over- numb- because I am still very emotionally tender underneath. Numbness as a part of healing… just like a scab. (I love Aha! Moments. What would we do without them, really?)
This realization, while not enough to relieve the numbness/ depression I was experiencing emotionally, was enough to give me some (maybe?) hope that it would one day end. I mean, I knew enough at the time to know that my physical wound would eventually heal- and would likely leave a scar. So my hope is that this emotional wound will heal as well.
And, yes, leave a scar.
Broken heart photo credit: Google images
The Motley Ms.
Hi! My name is Melinda. I'm a saved-by-grace-er, lifelong learner, INFJ, health & fitness trynabe, Mom, #vanlifer, mental health vlogger, and Director & Clinical Supervisor at a Child & Family Therapy Practice in Northern California.
The Motley Ms
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