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Broken Hearts Can Heal

My heart breaks when people are sarcastic. Not in a funny haha sarcastic way, in a mean sarcastic way. I have a physical reaction to it. My body tenses, I look them in the eyes, and then I get away from them. I think it's because I feel their intention. I know - even if they're trying to cover it up, that they mean to hurt me. I also know that people that use this type of sarcasm are hurting themselves. This breaks my heart too.

Imagine for a moment a young girl, normal enough, goes to school, does her chores, never gets in trouble because she always wants to do the right thing, loves unconditionally, laughs and sings, runs and dances. I love to dance. Now imagine this girl getting hit by a car - not literally, but almost. When I was little, my heart was getting broke constantly. To me, it felt like I was getting hit by a car. My heart would ache. My body would actually hurt. I tried to explain to my parents what I was feeling, but they thought I was just sick, and maybe I was. Physically, I don't have the best immune system. I would fall in love with the baby lambs that were born on our farm. Then one day, I would come home from school and they would be gone. They disappeared completely from our barn, which really meant, shipped off to slaughter. The kitten a neighbor gave me got attacked and killed right in front of me by a hunting dog. I have the look on it's face imprinted in my mind. It's little body lifeless after my dad had to choke the dog with a stick twisted into its' collar to get it

to let go of the kitten. The cows that I helped my mother bottle feed and we named them (what were we thinking?) were butchered as well. It wasn't the fact that we ate these animals that hurt me. It was the way it all went down. People were careless. When I got home from school, their heads were laying in the yard next to my favorite tree. (What were they thinking?) I had nightmares for weeks. I was only 10 years old.

Oh, that's not all.... When I was 15, two of my teachers were killed in car wreck, on the way to a game. They just never arrived. One of them was my cheerleading coach. She didn't show up to our game. The next year, my family had moved to another state and we finally had a home that we could settle into. I was a junior in high school and my heart was truly broke that I had to leave all of the friends I had. I made two friends at the new high school. Two. One of them I am friends with yet to this day. The other, pulled out of the parking lot of our high school and got hit head on by a truck. She died right there. Jamie never got to graduate with us. She was the kindest person I had ever met. On her gravestone, her parents had engraved, "Heaven has our Angel" She was an only child. My heart broke because I lost my friend, but my heart broke for her parents even more. I'm still not finished. My heart broke again in college, when one of the friends I made in my art classes told me and another guy that he was going to kill himself after his girlfriend had broken up with him. We said, "please don't talk like that. You're going to get over her. You have your whole life ahead of you. It's going to be ok". He looked at both of us and nodded his head.

He said, "yeah, I guess you're right. You guys want a beer? I'll go get us some." We were in a busy bar where he had to walk around a corner to get to the bartender. My other friend and I waited. We waited some more. I got this terrible feeling in my body, like a fear and a yearning all at the same time. I wasn't sure why, but I got up and started to look for Mike. My friend did too. I ran outside because Mike was no longer there. We ran down the street to his home but he wasn't there. This was before cell phones when I was in college. No one could find him. Then, out of no where, we heard sirens coming from across town. We had all split up to look for him. I was alone walking home. I didn't know if those sirens were for Mike or for someone else. I finally got home to my phone ringing. It was one of my friends. She was crying. Mike had jumped off the bridge and killed himself. He died that evening. My heart broke because I couldn't stop him. I didn't know how.

I sometimes think that was the key right there. I didn't know. I didn't know HOW to help myself or my friends. I didn't have any of those skills. And yet, I persevered. My experience with all this dying and all this heart break grew a ton of resiliency. It also opened my heart to love even more.

At the young age of 27, I got pregnant with our first child. I didn't think I was ready AT ALL. I remember going to my first doctor's appointment and getting that little picture. He looked like a tiny little fish swimming around in there. Busy and a total miracle... I fell in love again. My heart filled with joy like nothing I had ever experienced in life. I was going to be a mother. And guess what? I could be a mom the way I wanted to be - I didn't have to repeat anything that happened to me. Not one single thing. It was the most glorious time of my life. I got to experience it all over again with our second child. Our darling little girl. She is the love of my life.

My heart continues to break when either one of my children are hurting. Not necessarily physically, but emotionally and spiritually as well. I see how their lives are so different than mine and they still have such challenges to conquer, experiences to endure and succeed at. It's all part of the journey. Accidents happen. While we were living on an island, a young woman that we all knew died in a boat accident. My husband and I were woke up by a phone call in the early hours of the morning to search for her and the boat. We had to leave our children at home. We tried to slip out of the house quietly, but for some reason, when we returned, both of our children were awake and crying because they had somehow woke up and couldn't find us. I regret that decision. The worst part was we didn't have good news when we got home. We were all very shook up by what had happen. Two people had lost their lives that day from the accident. When you live on a small island, everyone is so close and connected to each other. Everyone on that island felt the heart break of that accident.

I wish people wouldn't hurt one another on purpose. I don't understand it. I find it horrifying that people actually WANT to hurt someone else. Don't they feel things the way I do? It's not surprising to me how people become afraid of their heart breaking - and yet there is so much living to be done! Life is not without heart break. I think the more my heart breaks, the more I am willing to love and I will continue to love fully, with all my being. It is what I was put on this earth for. I believe it is what we were all put on this earth for. To love with all of our might. To have our hearts broken and then healed, broken and then healed. I will take my shattered heart that has so many streams of gold running through it, just like that Japanese pottery. We become something different with all this breaking and healing, breaking and healing. In a world where accidents happen, and disease happens, no human should ever cause pain to another. Life is hard enough.

I once read somewhere that we should look closely at every single thing we do and ask ourselves, "Is this good for me right now?" If so, then ask, "Is this good for my community right now?" and then ask, "Is this good for the planet?" If you can answer yes to each one of those questions, then do it. If you cannot, then you reconsider your next move. Blessings for a beautiful day today. Look through the pain and see what it's telling you. That's what I do, every single day.

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