Do you remember when you were a kid and you absolutely dreaded when your mom ripped off your Band-Aid? I would purposely keep my Band-Aid on until the damn thing fell off in the bathtub. I know. I know. That’s so gross. Hey – whatever I had to do to lessen the pain.
I wish I could go back to those days when one of my greatest fears was just getting a super sticky Band-Aid ripped off my skin. In a sense, I still have that fear. I just have bigger Band-Aids and bigger wounds now. Not physical wounds, but emotional wounds. In my opinion, emotional wounds are much more difficult to face. You could hit me over the head with a 2x4 and that’d be easier to endure than some of the emotional trauma I’ve experienced in my life.
No matter the level of pain, there are two big differences between physical wounds and emotional wounds:
1. You can’t cover up an emotional wound with a Band-Aid. Trust me – I’ve tried. I got so good at covering up my emotional wounds that I became a walking Band-Aid. You can slap on a Band-Aid by putting on a happy face and telling yourself and the world, “I’m fine. I’m fine. Really – I’m fine!” It might work temporarily, but that Mickey Mouse Band-Aid will soon turn transparent and your wound will show through. It will rear its ugly head in every area of your life – physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Try all you want, but you can’t hide your wounds.
2. A Band-Aid will not heal the wound. It doesn’t make a difference how long you keep the Band-Aid on either; the wound will never heal on its own. You will end up taking that wound and your super sticky Band-Aid all the way to your grave. Only YOU have the power to heal your wounds.
So, what do we do then, my fellow wounded soldiers? We make the choice to no longer be controlled by our wounds. We make the choice to no longer allow our wounds to define us. We are not our wounds!
I could probably write for days on this subject, but let me give you a few suggestions:
1. Rip off that damn Band-Aid! This step takes balls and it’s gonna hurt like a mofo. But let me tell ya’, keeping that boo-boo covered up and preventing it from healing is even worse! Boo-boo. I like that description even better! Boo-boo makes our wounds sound so much cuter! Make sure you rip off your Band-Aid lightning fast, too. None of this slowww one-millimeter-at-a-time crap. Allow your boo-boo to be completely exposed. There’s no such thing as half-ass healing. Also, Mommy isn’t going to rip off your Band-Aid for you either. YOU have to do it! YOU have to want it!
2. Give yourself permission to heal. Before you begin any type of healing process, you always have to give yourself permission to heal first. Tell yourself that it’s OKAY that you got a lil’ boo-boo along the way. We all stumble and fall during this crazy journey of life. Give yourself permission to take the time for your heart and soul to heal your wounds.
3. Say hello to your boo-boo! Yes, I want you to talk to your boo-boo. I want you to ask your boo-boo to show itself. I’m warning you though ... this step takes even bigger balls than step #1. Probably the size of an elephant. When we ask questions, it’s only natural that answers will bubble to the surface. And that's what we want, right? Answers? Ask your boo-boo: Why are you here? How were you created? Who is involved? How did you affect me then? How do you affect me now? How do you affect me mentally? Physically? Spiritually? Emotionally? And the best question of them all ... What do you want to teach me?
4. Show your boo-boo who’s boss. Do NOT fear the boo-boo! As those answers begin to come to the surface, don’t run from them. I will not lie and say that it’s not going to hurt like hell. Because it will! Ripping off the Band-Aid will seem more like a walk in the park compared to staring your boo-boo in the face. Remind yourself that you and your life are worth it. Show your boo-boo who’s boss! Stay in the ring and fight for your freedom.
5. Let the healing begin! Do whatever you need to do to allow that boo-boo to heal. Journal about it, read about it, cry about it, laugh about it, do art therapy, attend a workshop, meditate, take it to the yoga mat, talk to a friend, talk to a therapist, and listen to podcasts. I like Oprah's new Super Soul Conversations podcast! There is a TON of help out there. You just have to go get it. You could also just cry your eyes out and eat a whole batch of brownies. I MAY have done that myself. Anyway, do what ya’ gotta do, but no matter what, keep at it. It WILL take time, but I PROMISE that you will eventually see the light at the end of the tunnel.
The most important thing to remember, no matter if it’s step number 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5, is to blast your boo-boo with lots and lots of LOVE. Love truly does heal everything.
I told myself that I was going to keep this blog brief, but gosh – I couldn’t help myself. Writing this blog post is actually Step# 5 for me. Writing helps me to heal. Even more so, sharing my writing with the world helps me to heal as well. I pray that my words and my wisdom have provided you with hope in healing your boo-boos. By the way, if you insist on wearing a Band-Aid, at least make it a Wonder Woman Band-Aid.