Damaged Souls

They say that we must experience the depths of despair to be able to value happiness and wisdom. Throughout my life I have always found that those with the damaged souls have the most loving, the most wise. Some live in the shadows for fear of getting hurt again, while others may use their suffering as means of opportunity. We do not choose what happens to us, but we choose our reactions and responses. In my Communication Theory class we learned about existentialist Viktor Frankl who noted that, “What is significant is the person’s attitude toward an unalterable fate. The opportunity to realize such attitudinal values is therefore always present whenever a person finds her or himself confronted by a destiny toward which he or she can only act by acceptance. The way in which a person accepts, the way in which he or she bears the cross, the courage that is manifest in suffering, what dignity he or she displays in doom and disaster, is the measure of human fulfillment.” We all are a bit damaged, bruised, scratched. We have all been stripped from the inside. We have all had our hearts beaten. We have all experienced baggy eyes, weak limbs, and wired thoughts. But in order to keep on keeping on, we must choose to turn our misfortunes into opportunity. My professor also discussed the idea that we may allow ourselves to surrender. We must experience abandon and disaster to really understand meaning. Those that react with cynicism are using this as a defense mechanism, so we let them. We let them because we know the pain, for we too have had damaged souls. But we should encourage the cynical ones to open their hearts again, to allow them to really feel despite their pain. Breakup, loss, it does not matter. We must learn to embrace these human despairs and not just fight against them; we must open our arms to the damaged souls- even if we are damaged, too.

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