The Walls My Heart Built

The walls my heart built are my protection and my prison.

I learned from a very young age that the people who are supposed to always love you and protect you may end up being the people who leave you and hurt you the most. I learned from a very young age that the people you want to trust—the people you should be able to trust without question—are not always worthy of that trust.

My heart broke for the first time at a very young age. I learned how to mend the broken pieces of my heart together, but it was never to be the same. The innocence that I once knew was gone and my ability to feel secure and love unconditionally as any young child should was overshadowed by my fear of losing more loved ones…my fear of feeling more pain. So, I built a wall around my heart. It was not a strong wall, but it gave my heart a protective barrier—one that could easily be broken down by those I felt secure enough to let in.

My walls have never been fail proof. They allowed some people in who should never have been able to inhabit my heart—even for a moment. They allowed pain and betrayal to seep in—some of which were so harmful that I never thought my heart would ever recover. These walls have also kept me from forming real relationships with people who opened their hearts to me—people with whom I could never allow myself to do the same.

With each heartbreak and betrayal, my walls become stronger and stand taller around my heart. I find myself trusting less and allowing fewer people in. I find myself hiding behind my walls, even with people who love me and people I know I should be able to trust wholeheartedly. As I grow older, I find myself being able to forgive, but never forget. If you have broken my trust, I may let you back in, but never in the same way as before.

The walls I built as protection around my heart have also become my prison. While my heart remains safe, it feels so empty…so alone. I am tired…so tired. I wish I could let people in without question. I wish for the day when I can let my guard down and show people who I truly am without worrying about whether or not I will be liked or accepted. I wish for the day when I no longer feel the need to run away or hide. I wish for the day when I can allow my heart to love fully and live without fear of pain and loss and broken trust and betrayal. I wish for the day when my heart feels whole enough and strong enough to break down the walls I built around it so long ago.

One day, my walls will come down. But, for now, my heart remains protected and imprisoned—waiting for the day when the feelings of security are able to calm the overwhelming fears and the feelings of pain and loss are no more.

But, for now, I wait.

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3 thoughts on “The Walls My Heart Built

  1. Thank you for writing this. I have a 10 year old son (with us 1.5 years) that I’m sure can identify with this more than even I can fathom. It’s been a really tough week in our house and I know it comes from the pain in his heart. It’s hard for this mom to keep perspective sometimes because it can come out so ugly and hurtful. But today I was overwhelmed with frustration and anger – not at him – at the people before me that said and did such hateful and terrible things to him before I even knew. Those that caused so much pain. I see the walls he has and I don’t blame him. And i wish I wish I wish he could understand that he is in a different place and he is safe but right now he can’t and, again, I can’t blame him. Hurt is all he’s really ever known. Reading the words of an adult who “gets it” is good for me. Thank you. I don’t even know you but you helped me be a better mom today.

  2. You are on the journey to tearing down those walls. How do I know this? First, you have recognized that the walls are there. Sometimes we can be blind to what’s causing our unhappiness – but not you. Nope! Your eyes are wide open. Second, you have a desire to change. You have decided you don’t like living the way you’re living and want to choose something different for yourself. Third, you begun reaching out. You’ve reached out to some people in “the real world” and you’ve posted this to the online community – a sign that you are tearing down those walls. You say you are waiting. Well, this is the omen you’ve been waiting for. Take the next step in your journey. You can do it!!!

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