Do You Mask Your Wound?

My eight year old was bruised badly. Falling off the slide, the left side of her face had been scraped by the rough gravel below. Luckily the wound wasn’t very deep and required just a bit of home treatment. But the little one was upset beyond words. The swelling caused her pain when she ate or spoke.  It made her conscious too. “What if my friends laughed at the wound on my face?  I won’t go to school tomorrow”, she sobbed. Calming her down, I convinced her that hiding from people isn’t really the solution. Instead, she should tell her friends how brave she had been, to withstand the pain of the wound. The little one seemed convinced. She dared to not mask her wound!!!

How well kids accept simple solutions to life’s issues!

But growing up into adults, this ability surely seems to do the vanishing act.  Despite having given all that gyan to my eight year old, I realized the hard- hitting truth, that I had been doing just the reverse. I tend to mask my wounds. Probably not the ones visible, but the hidden emotional wounds embedded deep within the recesses of the heart.

Hidden wounds take longer to heal than physical wounds.

There is a hidden wound in almost each one of us, isn’t it? Memories that hurt, of prejudices inflicted by society, memories of abuse, ridicule, criticism or hatred. I often suppress such wounds within me, letting the anger grow inside. Seldom did I realize that by doing so, I was subconsciously never allowing the wound to heal. I was just making it worse!!!

Applying the gyan…

…I gave my little one, I reflected on healing the hidden wounds.

Speaking it out: There’s something about revealing feelings to someone you trust. It relieves a great deal of the pain, fear, anger, resentment and bitterness.

Emotions are natural: I realized there’s no point in resenting feelings. These are natural emotions and whether we like it or not, they come with an element of pain. So acknowledging them helps to effectively handle them when they arise the next time.

Face it all: Over the years I tended to avoid certain situations and kind of people with the fear of being hurt. It was more my fear that caused discomfort, than the actual situation. It is important to overcome this fear, and to do one must let go of past memories.

Emotions are part of human existence. The real strength does not lie in masking it, or pretending it does not exist, but in the courage to accept it and bear it all.

So, do you also mask your wounds?

*Featured Image Source: Pixabay

27 comments

  1. Just yesterday I was talking to a friend about someone else who seemed to be arrogant. Then we realized it was just his way of coping with a difficult past. Oh we all try to hide our wounds, but they show up someplace else, don’t they? Loved this reflection, Ramya.

    1. So true Corinne, They show up in some form ,somewhere and at sometime… But we need to let go of it and be comfortable with all the scars we carry!!!

  2. We learn so many lessons while teaching them to our kids, don’t we? And since you asked well of course I hide my wounds. Because opening up to people needs some amount of bravery, it involves the risk of being made fun of. Not all wounds are meant to be shared with everyone.

  3. Very thought-provoking post, Ramya. I think we all mask our wounds to some extent. Sometimes in the name of memory, or forgiveness or in the spirit of moving on. I think it could be very situation based but masking is also needed. Not also we are needed to show our vulnerable side. Isn’t it?

  4. I completely agree, Ramya. Let me share an experience of mine with you. Just recently I got a tooth extracted and had massive swelling on one side of my face. I was very reluctant to step out of my house but the family dragged me out to lunch in a swanky place the other day. You wouldn’t believe how everyone was staring at me. It made me feel self conscious. But then after some time, I just relaxed and enjoyed the food and company. Others got busy with their own stuff too. So yes, it is important to feel confident in one’s skin.

    1. Thaanks for sharing your expereince Rachna. you have clearly brought out the fact that its important to be comfortable in one’s skin despite any scars ….

  5. Sometimes we even hide our wounds from ourselves – removing those inner masks is the first step, before sharing with others. It takes courage to let go of the vulnerability and face the hurt and then move on to overcoming it.

  6. Your words remind me of this quote I read somewhere.
    ‘Don’t be ashamed of your scars. It simply means you were stronger than whatever tried to hurt you.’

    Sometimes, children are clearer than adults. They understand better and easily – the unnecessary burden (of unnecessary thoughts) we carry all the time.

    Very thoughtful post. And, I am sure she is fine now. Stay blessed. 🙂

  7. There are only some to whom you can show your scars. I had been hiding it from long and its yesterday, when I told the story to my friend and became relaxed. You are right, letting go is the only solution to ease our self.

  8. Yes, I mask my wounds even when I know that doing so will only make them fester and ruin my peace of mind. But, then we need guts to talk about it, for we fear spoiling relationships. At times, I do talk about it as subtly as I can to the person who hurt me. But, of late, I have been thinking I need to change my attitude towards these emotional wounds. I ought to use these as the driving force in our life to help me work on myself and not let them hurt me the way they were intended to.

  9. Sadly, that is how the reality is! No matter how much we come out in the open and talk about our weaknesses, there is always someone who takes you as weak,or considers you as someone who is seeking attention or maybe just someone who cries over petty things in life. There are few who will understand you and be your rock!

    Cheers

  10. Such a lovely thought provoking post. We indeed have our hidden scars, and it is best to open them upto healing. At least to one person, someone you trust. Thankfully I have that someone in my hubby whom I can bare my soul to, scars and shames and insecurities.

    Aditi

  11. As adults we are called to mask our wounds with all but our most intimate relations (friends, family) and that is right. Vulnerability is a strength, but we needn’t offer it to the general public.

  12. I’ve taken years to get to a place of being more open about my wounds. Is it because we are taught to hide them from a young age? I’m not sure, but I like the way your essay addresses this subject.

  13. I have a terrible tendency to open and display my wounds for all to see. I am not naturally confrontational, but you’d never know that if you were near me, because a part of me still wants to get that wound closed and healing as fast as possible. Sometimes to the detriment of those around me, so it’s not the greatest attribute to have either. Haha

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