I have always loved and appreciated words. The way they form, the meaning behind them, where they originated from, how they sound. Everything about words and language I seem to connect with on both an emotional and visceral level.
With that in mind, I have always loved the word healing, and not been fond of the word healed. There is such a huge difference in those two terms, even though they are different forms of the same word.
The word “healed” implies that there is a finish line; that someone could ever really be entirely finished or completed from going through and living with tragedy, grief, or trauma. To be healed from any of those things also implies that we should be leaving them behind, putting it away, and “moving on”; which is the biggest lie of all the grief cliches. I truly believe that, as humans, we are not ever completely healed from anything, just as we are not ever completely learned of anything. As long as we breathe air, there is always more to learn, more ways to grow and evolve, and we are always in active healing. To claim you are fully healed from anything such as the death of a loved one; to me implies that it no longer affects you in any way whatsoever, and that you no longer have anything to learn from this precious life. How arrogant to think that you now know all there is to know, and that you are now finished with allowing in new information. How self-centered to no longer wish to hear other people’s experiences, and to listen and learn and grow from them. How much you would miss out on if you announced to the world that you are now fully healed, and you no longer require assistance of any kind, forever.
The act of healing can be a difficult and exhausting thing, and it is a thing that happens outside the lines, and inside the scribbles. It is a thing that goes the wrong way on a one-way street, or screams inside of a quiet library. Healing has all sorts of mistakes, wrong decisions, and figuring it out as you go.
And also, it is a thing filled with beauty and purpose and profound meaning. It is inside the healing that we find our empathy, our compassion, our ability to live through and with things that we never imagined we could. It is inside my own healing that I have met some of the best people I have ever known. It is inside my healing that I chose to open my heart again to new love, to joy, to possible and inevitable grief and sorrow. It is inside the healing that beauty became more beautiful, music became more lyrical, and nature became more breathtaking. It is inside the healing that the realization of our mortality led to intense and forever gratitude for our living.
I do not ever want to be finished healing.
For then, I would be finished being human.