I had a hardened heart. It was broken so long ago that I cannot remember the moment it got its first crack. I do know, however, that the fissure spread, fueled by numerous hurts and disappointments, causing the entire vessel to callous over to save itself.
I believe if my symbolic heart could have been seen it would’ve resembled a dry desert floor, with crinkly veins encompassing the entire landscape. It was hard, it was compact and it was cold.
The fires were long since dead, the halls of my heart were vacant.
They were…until now.
I am a living testimony of deliverance of a hard heart. No, I’m not going to get spiritual in this, I’m just going to tell you how I came back from hell. I’m going to tell you how you can do this as well. Moreover, I’m going to tell your loved ones how to help you.
For me, it took love…a raw love, void of deception and full of patience. That’s one way to do it…. there are many more.
Accept your pain
I’m not saying that you should put up with abuse or mistreatment. What I’m saying is that you must first accept your pain in order to move past it-denial cannot help you at all. Acceptance is the first step of forgiveness. Pain is not the enemy here, because, in life, we will experience more than our share of this thing.
In the beginning, when the cracks start to appear, accept your pain, allow it to course through you pushing out tears. Then you can take control of yourself and heal the cracks before they can spread.
View your circumstances from the outside
In order to get a well-rounded idea of what you’re going through, try to see things from other perspectives. Sometimes when we see things from our vantage point alone, we cannot understand how our hardened hearts may be creating other hardened hearts in the process of our angry retaliation. After all, those with hard hearts are often defensive and strong-willed at the same time.
If you are still in the same place and with the same people who caused your heart to callous over, you will never heal, and unfortunately, sometimes those on the outside will only see your negative actions when hurt and angry. Change your perspective and change everything!
Stop using your past to defend yourself
If you have a hard heart, your actions are probably less than savory. This is something that gets worse the longer you saturate in your desolation. When you enter new relationships, you will use your past a comparison all the time. Your new acquaintances will grow weary of being compared to the one who abused or hurt you.
To heal, you must let go-let go of past people, situations, and places so that you can see the future and the people in the future in a whole new light. The past will color how everything in your future is perceived.
Learn to understand your emotions
Your emotions will deceive you more times than not. Things from your past have created trigger words and objects that can irritate and confuse your emotions. When you notice, you are having more and angrier outbursts, ask yourself if anything could have triggered the incident. Otherwise, those who don’t understand will see you as an angry or downright mean person.
Those new friends you just met will no longer want to associate with you if they don’t know why your emotions are in an uproar. If you are a loved one who deals with this, then patience and communication are key. There is a root to the problem, and there is a trigger that brings out certain emotions in those with hard hearts.
Believe in Love
I know it’s hard. It was hard for me, heck, I had all but given up on the knight on the horse coming to rescue me…. almost. There is love out there, a love that will not manipulate or abuse you. If you believe in love, it will keep your heart soft, making it easier when love arrives at last. No everyone wants to drain you and constantly fight for control. Not everyone wants to cheat, use and break you. Hang in there, love is coming, and you want to be prepared to be your best.
I had a hard heart, and honestly, it still has its knots and scars. But love found me…after I decided that I was worthy and I was beautiful. I still struggle with trust and with being controlled, but I can feel the dried pieces of paint flaking away with every “I love you” and every “I’m not going anywhere”.