We have all been hurt in love; ripped open and left raw.
We call it broken and in the naming create even more pain for ourselves. It isn’t called broken because it doesn’t work anymore, it is called broken because it needs to heal. We need to heal. And we aren’t ready to feel again until we do.
In our bodies we get subtle messages, discomfort and dull pain—or the occasional sharp pain. If we refuse to pay attention to the subtle messages and pain, the voice grows louder and the pain escalates to a scream. When we ignore the scream something in our body goes wrong… it breaks.
Our heart is the same. We get messages; sometimes we just refuse to listen. We want to believe in love (in the dream), and why not? We chose to love and now our needs aren’t being met or our boundaries have been leveled. We stay because we care… sometimes. But fear is also there. And shame and so many other emotions and conditions that we lay on ourselves to further complicate this difficult experience. We doubt, we waver and we wait.
We break our own hearts… because we are attached.
Sometimes it is not the object of love we are attached to but an idea, a mirage or a ghost from the past. We don’t only break our heart over lovers. We fall in love with many things: people, jobs, situations, objects. All different shades of love.
But how can we love without attachment?
It is not a question of loving without care. It is a decision to love in the present moment through all the change. And sometimes love requires us to walk away. Knowing what action to take comes from within. We need to listen… and feel.
Practice One: Feel.
Stand at the shore of emotion, with toes on the line between wet and dry.
Be tall and strong as the wave crashes.
Watch as it retreats, gathering energy, attempting to pull us in.
Don’t lose grounding. Exhale. Fortify the foundation.
Slip toes and heels into the sand. Lean slightly back.
Throw the arms wide open.
Lift the chest and heart full of gratitude to the sky.
Embrace the wave as it returns again. Again. And again.
Fall in love with the waves of this life.
And let each wave go—let it return to the sea.
No longer call it a broken heart. We are alive.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Editor: Rachel Nussbaum
Photo: Michael Moore