Whoever it was that said, "Time heals all things," was a liar. Time doesn’t heal, time simply allows perspective. Time only allows things to fester and hurt worse. Time never healed cancer. Time never pieced a broken heart back together. Time only allowed wisdom to bring perspective that put the pain in its place. In high school I finally got out the nerve to ask a girl out. I didn’t date much, or actually at all. I had, and still have, a hard time relating to females. When the time came for Christmas banquet – we didn’t have a prom – I managed to muster up the courage to ask Holly Grubbs if she would go with me. She said yes. The day before the banquet she called me and told me that she was going with someone else. I was stacking firewood out in the snow when she called. I am surprised that my parents had anything bigger than a toothpick left to burn. Then someone, I don’t recall who, told me that timeless lie – time heals all things. It didn’t. Still today when I think about that there is a twinge of hurt. But perspective has allowed me to realize that anyone who would do what she did wasn’t really deserving of all that much affection from me.
On November 17, 1996 I got married. In October of 2000 separated. After a few years of trying to make things work (at least I did any way) she told me on December 23, 2004 she was having an affair, our divorce was final on April 26, 2005. Time won’t heal that pain either. Perspective, however, allowed me to see what life was like trapped in a loveless marriage with an unfaithful spouse. It has allowed me to finally see myself for who I really am. It has allowed me to start living again. Whenever I come across a piece of our marriage it still hurts just as much as it did the night she told me about the affair. It may be a picture, a note, or just a stray memory, but it hurts. It isn’t healed and quite possible never will be, but I can see why I am much better off now.
I have lost several fronds to death. Car wrecks, natural causes, murder, disease, and even suicide have added to the toll of accumulated loss. Time hasn’t healed the wounds that thier passing left. Time hasn’t brought piece or even acceptance. Perspective has allowed me to see that I hold the precious memories of their lives in my heart. Perspective allows me to love them still. It gives comfort through their memories. But not time. Time just marks the length of their absence, but perspective marks the love that was shared through our friendship.
In every tragedy or unfortunate circumstance we face our greatest ally isn’t time. It is being able to see the good that has come from each and every moment of our lives. Each situation is a portal to the future. Without pain there is no growth. The pain of birth brings life, the pain of life brings experience, and the pain of experience brings perspective. Only with the proper perspective can we go forward. Only perspective can allow us to accept the fate that has befallen us and lead richer, more fulfilling lives.
May you never know hardship, may you never suffer pain. But if you do eventually perspective will allow you to see the good that came from it. Proper perspective heals all things.