listening to the heart

There is a beautiful line in the ‘Alchemist’ (desert island book list), where Paul Coelho says,


You will never be able to escape from your heart.  So it is better to listen to what it has to say.”


For a while I have struggled with this.  I have been reaching in to my heart to hear what it has to say, to help me choose, decide which path, which step to take next.  I have been willing it to tell me.  It’s silence and indecision has left me confused and wanting.


And I am now surprised why it has taken me so long to realise why.  Perhaps shock, denial, disbelief has prevented me from seeing it.  Perhaps because it was locked away and couldn’t be heard.  In a little box, one I locked up and threw away the key as Christmas was too emotional to look at it and in Africa I was having too much fun to care..


But my heart is broken.  In to two pieces.  Two whole pieces and falling out on to  the floor, laid bare, open, apart and vulnerable.  It is in no position to make choices or decisions.  All it can do is its job, to function.  To do anything else, it needs to re-find it’s other half, re-join, re-mesh and become whole again.


When I was crying through ‘Eat Pray Love’ in my little dovecot bed in Edinburgh, I wrote down Elizabeth Gilbert’s words,


The only way to heal a broken heart is to trust. To have broken hard means you have.”


Trust is still a big issue for me.  Because it never was before.  I was unwaveringly trusting, non-questioning, open and honest.  And that was abused.  Big time.  Because my trust was so pure, my heart is purely and cleanly broken.  And the distrust is not only for others, but towards myself too.  I don’t trust myself.  I don’t trust myself to be strong enough.


I knew.  I warned.  I trusted.

I discovered.  I gave a second chance. I trusted.

I was told. I was broken.  I can’t trust when i need it most.


And just as a year ago I learnt about the waves of grief, I am feeling them again.  And as I feel them, I notice new waves.  Bigger waves.  Heavier waves that crash down with force.


The wave of rejection.  Rejected and left over and over again, so many times.

The wave of humiliation.  Receiving letters, gifts and notes with smiley faces taunting me, from her, believing she was someone else.

The wave of violation.  As anyone suffering betrayal will feel.

The wave of abuse.  Emotionally taking on the guilt of others, my good nature taken advantage of.

The wave of embarrassment.  Walking tall and proud of my marriage and my man.  My ignorance bliss.

The wave of sadness.  That it is all over.  That everything is changing.  Leaving my beautiful home that is haunted by her ghost.  Grief for the lost future we were building and dashed memories.

The waves of hatred.  For someone I don’t know and who won’t accept any blame.  For someone I am in love with and who accepts all responsibility.

The wave of confusion.  The only person to comfort me is the one person who hurt me the most.


The best way to deal with waves is to dive under or through them.  And watch them crash over you until they pass.  Mindfully watch the thoughts until they pass on.  Breathing and resting when you can, pushing through the exhaustion.


Writing this all down has helped me conclude that there is no action to be taken, other than to wait.  Wait until my heart is ready to mend.  Wait until my heart is ready to trust again.


And I need to give my heart a break.  Stop asking it what to do until it is healed.


Until then, it is back to living in the moment, enjoying what I am doing, who I am with and being compassionate and loving towards myself.


My head is fine.  Outwardly I look good.  My packaging intact. When I look in the mirror, which isn’t often (I have Catoptrophobia) I surprise myself that given my broken internal nature, I look pretty good. Soft tan from Africa, lean and strong and clear, fresh, youthful skin and glossy hair thanks to toxin elimination and my evening pamper detox spa bath.


And for anyone who is kind enough or compassionate enough to ask, I can answer I am fine.


So the package is good. And my mind says it is up and out of the ocean. But opening up the cage that I have hidden my heart in, I see that my heart is still at the bottom of the ocean, in 2 pieces, watching and feeling the waves crashing overhead.


So, today, I have been brave and vulnerable.  I did as Paul Coelho advises and asked my heart what it had to say and I listened.  And I heard what it had to say.  And now it is time to gently put it back in it’s box, for the sadness that exudes from my body when I look at it, not only upsets me but upsets the boys too.  And while I love the flowers, gifts and kisses, it saddens me to know they see it. So my heart is back in its box for the time being, and the waves become a distant rumble as they continue to crash.


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