The Wounded Healer

pbp1The concept of the wounded healer is a really helpful one for me.

I am a fucking mess. I have mental breakdowns on a weekly basis; I often forget to take my meds several days in a row; I basically can’t handle normal human interaction like telephone calls or just, you know, having people see me; it takes me well over an hour just to get out the front door, even after I’ve finished getting ready, even if I’m going somewhere I want to go; I don’t trust  a lot of what comes out of my head; I often prefer to spend my time inside, on the internet listening to Rammstien or Apocalyptica or t.A.T.u. while I lament the fact that Kevin McKidd will probably be too old to play Jules deTania when/if Bellica ever becomes an HBO show, because this is obviously a bigger deal than fixing the multitude problems in my life. 

And yet.

And yet and yet and yet — yet people say that I’ve helped them. People tell me what I write helps them. People tell me that what I say — the words I cannot, myself, trust — helps them. I have something to offer to folks who are somewhat lost, even though I feel like no one can be as lost as I am.

And so perhaps there is something to the idea of the wounded healer. I am profoundly fucked up and yet I am able to offer something to folks who are only slightly fucked up, or possibly more fucked up, or maybe just as fucked up as I am.

Somehow, by being mired in my own darkness, I am able to fashion a light for others to see by. Somehow, by spending so long in the underworld of my own depression and anxiety, I am able to help people regain their footing on their own long, dangerous climbs out, back to the world of the living.

Is it the redecorating I’ve done? Have I actually gained some of my own footing? Or is this where I stay — a guide to others, but never leaving the underworld myself?

Does it matter?

I’ve helped people. And I pray and hope that I can continue to do so.

Even if a single phone call can make me a sobbing mess on the floor of my kitchen, screaming SET PHASERS TO LOVE ME.

One reply on “The Wounded Healer”

  1. “Wounded healer” sounds familiar- I looked it up myself- it’s a Jungian idea but one that shows up in a lot of cultures & religions.
    I have learning disabilities and mental health issues myself, and my experiences with them have taught me compassion. (Some of the problems you describe above sound familiar!) There is always someone else struggling more than I am, with less help from friends, family or the rest of society. I have to be careful to not burn myself out helping others. But when I do I feel more whole.

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