Thursday, March 31, 2011

Broken Strength

The minutes drug by as I struggled not to give in and cry. Sitting alone on the table I felt so very small, cold and helpless. A grown adult I attempted to belittle myself about my pain.

"You see kids running around with broken arms all the time. Come on...grow up. Quit sniveling! No seriously...STOP. Oh geez...you are going to start again."

A nurse came in the room at that moment, saw my eyes and immediately asked if I had taken the pain medication that had been given me. I didn't want to be bothered, so I said "Yes." The truth was I hadn't taken it since I had to drive myself. She began laying out all the things the doctor would need to set my arm in its final cast. Chirping about her day, attempting a cordial bedside manner and then she lied.


"You know your bone will grow back stronger. You'll be even better than before."

I knew better than that, but for a moment I laughed and said, "tell the doctor to come in and break all of me then."

During the weeks of healing, I felt the weakest I had ever felt. Handicapped. Dependent. I would go to the store and someone would always offer to help me. I would deny them and learn to do it by myself.

Then came the day that the cast came off. The doctor sat and looked at it; a frown taking the place of what I expected to be a smile and a cheery wave as I skipped cast free from that office. More xrays and more time waiting on that table. He finally came in and held my arm at the healed break.

"We are going to have to rebreak this. It didn't heal the way it should have. Did you use it? For appearances you will always have a lump there."

I snatched my arm back as though he had ripped a baby from my arms. Indignant, but mostly scared.


"I will not have my arm broken by someone again."

There was no smile or cheery wave as I left the room without being excused and never looked back.

The truth was I had used my arm. I worked through the pain because I couldn't handle being weak. I couldn't force myself to wait for the healing.

In reflecting I find this to be a theme for my life. I can't handle being weak when I am broken. I don't wait for the healing as I try to rush through the pain. The moments in my life that pushed me to my knees, I would defiantly stand back up on my feet and deny proper healing time. I think about that nurse and her lie.


"You know your bone will grow back stronger. You'll be even better than before."

Although it was a lie about my arm, it wasn't off the mark about my spirit. At the moment of the break; when weakness fills me; I need to allow myself time to heal properly. The pain of healing is sometimes unbearable but when allowed, can actually make you stronger.


There may be people who see the real you when you are weak, no matter the brave face you put on. They offer to help because you can't always do everything alone. I'm learning to let people help and let them see me weak. It can be painful to admit I can't do it, but then again they already knew that or they wouldn't have offered to help. Sometimes they can't actually help, but like the cast; they can surround you and protect you as you heal.

Being broken hurts. Healing is agonizing. Yet, in the end...you will be stronger.

12 comments:

Jessica said...

This is such a powerful message and one that I need to remind myself of. I am terrible at showing others my weakness, i can do it in writing but never in person. I HATE crying in front of others and always try to push past pain instead of working through it. Ultimately it all comes out, either in a waterfall or seeping through the cracks.

I could keep writing but this is your post so I will stop. Love this and all you shared about yourself through it.

(Florida) Girl said...

What a touching post.

It brings me to the thought, that sometimes allowing ourselves to be vulnerable is the more courageous thing to do.

~Debra said...

Well said, sweetie! Great post!

Varda said...

Wow, just... wow. Such an important message. Taking the time to heal. Yes.

Renee said...

This so true. Too often we put on armor and battle through.
And really we to take the hand offered.

Jayne said...

This struck a huge chord with me because well, I
have a similar problem. Such a well-illustrated point.

Queen Mahin said...

Hi. I followed a tweet here from @fourplusanangel. So glad that I did. As a single parent I have to be strong almost all of the time, but I've also learned to accept help and ask for what I need in as loud a voice as is necessary. Is that weak?
Your words paint pictures. Beautiful writing.

CM said...

I agree.

Beautiful and so honest. What a lesson, learned the hard way, yet so important.

I know in my life, when I've had hard things happen, I just stuffed it down for years. Not until I was in a safe place and surrounded by loving, supportive people could I begin to allow myself to feel the pain, and then heal.

DaisyGal said...

I'm one of those people that always offers my help but I'm not good at letting people HELP me. I want it, I crave it, but I never ever ask.
Plus I think that asking is weak.

this was just a gorgeous post, a reminder of how we're not "an island" , not any of us and if we reach out, if we allow ourselves to be there for each other, our healing happens...the way it should.

I know that you are so strong inside and that is something that I envy very much.
Your words, as always touch me so deeply.

xo

DaisyGal said...

I'm one of those people that always offers my help but I'm not good at letting people HELP me. I want it, I crave it, but I never ever ask.
Plus I think that asking is weak.

this was just a gorgeous post, a reminder of how we're not "an island" , not any of us and if we reach out, if we allow ourselves to be there for each other, our healing happens...the way it should.

I know that you are so strong inside and that is something that I envy very much.
Your words, as always touch me so deeply.

xo

Simple Life Journey said...

Well written. Sometimes it is painful to become stronger. It is uncomfortable and it hurts.

Naked Girl in a Dress said...

You, my friend, are a very gifted writer. I knew this already of course. But I fall in love just a little bit more with your writing with each new piece I read.

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