Friday, March 17, 2017

When the Pain Haunts You





"You hurt me". Those were the last words I spoke to him as I walked away. It was to a man I had never met before in real life but in my dream, he wooed me until I found out he wasn't sincere and that he was seeing someone else. 

I wasn't planning on being so honest. In my dream as I would have done in real life, I was set on choosing pride over transparency. I'm not sure what propelled me to blurt it out but those words of admission poured out as magma would from a volatile core. 

"You hurt me". As soon as the words escaped me, I woke up, as if thrust to reality by the power of those words. The heaviness I've felt since waking up from that dream has held me hostage for hours now as I wonder why and how such simple words can carry so much weight to them and release waves of complexities.

I suppose the weight of admitting to someone that they've hurt us lies in the fact that doing so is also an admission of the power they have over us. Vulnerability assumes that we opened ourselves to someone else, brought our defenses down, and allowed another person to wield some degree of influence over us. 

It's not easy to admit we're in pain, and owning that someone cut us deep is a truly humbling experience. I can't even remember the last time I explicitly admitted to someone that they've hurt me. Mostly, I choose some passive-aggressive route until I'm over it and just move on. This isn't exactly the healthiest approach and I am, by no means, recommending it. Clearly, not saying it out right is a way of taking the easy way out, because the truth is, inasmuch as the admission of our pain is a difficult task, the real work and challenge is what comes after the admission...

Once you say you're hurt, then what? To me, there is only one thing more powerful than saying you are hurt, and that is, "I forgive you". To say you are hurt is passive. To say you are ready to forgive is a manifestation of your own agency. One is a voice of empowerment; the other is a surrendering of your power to another. Both, however, take real courage and strength.

The man in my dream hurt my pride. He misled me and broke my heart. I surprised myself by having the courage to expose my pain. But I wasn't strong enough to finish the dream with forgiveness. Perhaps the dream is a call to think back and realize that I may have moved on from a past pain but have not completely forgiven. Perhaps the dream ended where it did and left me with a heaviness as a plea to my heart to find a way to truly unload and release...the past, the pain, the transgression. Perhaps the real ending was in my act of waking up. And yes, the dream has woken me now. 





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