Who among us has never felt this feeling? I’m not sure that I can even put words to the emotion behind the hands: exasperation, anger, frustration, sadness, hurt, fear, loneliness, let down.
There will be times in our lives when those people whom we love dearly, really, really let us down. They do not mean to, though at the time it can feel anything but unintentional, yet it hurts no less.
We have hung our star on their super hero supporter status and when it comes shooting down, it is not the things that dreams are made of. So what do we do when people let us down?
During times of disappointment it is important to allow ourselves to feel the blow. It is important to care for ourselves during these occasions, and to practice gentle kindness with our already raw heart, which was just put through the meat grinder.
And then, when enough time has passed for the emotional boo-boo to have at least stopped bleeding, or maybe even to have begun the first signs of healing, we need to let the person who has hurt us know the impact their choices made upon us.
This sharing does not mean dumping an emotional river of baggage upon an unsuspecting victim. It means taking the risk to be vulnerable, and to share where their dagger struck, and most importantly why the strike hurt us so badly. Doing so means that we must take the time, and being emotionally honest with ourselves, to see where we’ve really been wounded.
Recently I was let down, and it hurt like heck. I have not yet gotten to the place of being ready to allow that person into my emotional space again, that will take time. Yet I know that in relationship we will let each other down, we are human after all.
In the end, what matters is not the gaping wound, but rather the way we learn to bandage the infected area together. Taking time to stop the bleeding, and then to have honest conversations with those who have let us down, will allow both the stabber and the stabbed to heal and move forward. Because you see, often when we are so consumed by our own damaged self, we fail to see how our sword has struck their side as well