scars are windows that open and close

September 24, 2013Karen Courcy

windowAbout 2 years ago I was in the hospital getting treatment for my heart, and at the same time detoxing from pain medication that I was on, and it was a painful process both physically and emotionally.

While I was in the hospital for those 4 days, this man name Troy came by and talked to me. He was a hospital counselor who talked and help those who were coming off pain medication because it not only takes a physical toll on you, but also emotionally.

He would come by and talk to me every morning for the 4 days I was there. I still think he was the voice of God because everything he said sank so deep inside; like it was meant for me.

He was well aware of my therapist and we talked a lot about my healing journey. I really felt like this wonderful man Troy really treated me not as someone who had went through a life of hardship or pain, but as a person who was a mom, a wife, a friend, a healer, a child of God.

One of the mornings he stopped by to see me, he said to me “all of your scars and wounds are like windows that you can open up anytime and look into, and then close it when you need it to heal“.

When he told me that, it sent chills up my back and I couldn’t stop thinking about it, and to this day, even 2 years later, I have not stopped thinking about those very words and today I use them in my healing.

I have scars, many scars, but instead of looking at them as marks that are healed over with skin, I have learned how to open each scar, look inside, learn about it, feel it, understand it, have feelings about it, and then close it like a window – to heal.

My therapist and I have used this wisdom a lot in my healing. I am no longer feared by my scars, but rather I look at them as opportunities to heal.

Each scar both physical and emotional – I have the choice to look into them. I never had the choice when the scar was put on me, but today it is my choice how I open it, and heal from it.

I never thought that my scars could be like windows that open and close. I always saw my scars and wounds as pain, shame, guilt, embarrassment, hurt and anger all closed in and trapped like the silence I lived in my whole life –  I never saw them as little openings to my healing like letting butterflies out of a trapped jar to freedom.

My therapist and I have been working hard on looking at each wound and scar that I hold deep inside by opening it and letting the inside be seen and heard and then have the opportunity to close it knowing that at any time – I have the choice to look back into it as something I have healed not because of a natural physical process that a wound goes through, but as something I opened and closed by choice.

We spend so much time trying to cover scars and wounds, that we never stop to think that those very scars and wounds are the openings to our healing.

Those scars and wounds were put on us not by our choice; but the choice that is now ours and how we wear those scars and wounds.

Looking into each painful wound has been SO hard for me, but each time now that I go back to that same wound, I notice that it gets smaller and smaller not in size, but in depth of its healing.

The scar will always be there and be seen – but the pain inside will be healed by the choice we made to look into it and at it.

I often think about that moment that man Troy came in and sat on my bed and shared with me this wonderful wisdom, and I am still convinced it was God’s way of showing me how to heal the pain of every wound I carry around with me.



  • ziggy40

    September 24, 2013 at 3:56 PM

    What a lovely perspective, I think scars, are ‘battle wounds!’ The fact that you have survived, says a lot about your resilience and hard work in healing. I hope you continue on this healing journey!…lol
    Love Ziggy

    1. KarenBeth

      September 24, 2013 at 8:44 PM

      awwww thank you Ziggy 🙂 always nice to see you here and thank you …

  • Gel

    September 24, 2013 at 11:44 PM

    I like the meaning of what Troy told. I can see how special it was to have him share that with you at the particular time in your life. What a blessing!
    This post made me think a bit about the nature of healing…emotional healing is different in that it usually happens in waves or layers. So the idea of being able to open the wound up for healing as well as being able to close the wound and rest makes sense to me. But I admit I don’t like the use of images of “wound” and taking a scab off and putting it back on….It’s OK though. I do understand the point.

    Your story is also a good reminder for me because I do some healing work and forget that there might be more…usually is more that comes up later. And I can get really discouraged when I find out there is MORE work to do.

    I really like this part:
    “I never thought that my scars could be like windows that open and close….
    I never saw them as little openings to my healing like letting butterflies out of a trapped jar to freedom.”

    I’m suddenly remember what one therapist did with me a few years ago that I really liked and seems similar to your theme…After we had worked on facing some difficult stuff from the past he suggested that I imaging putting the stuff in a drawer or a filing cabinet. I would be there when I was ready to work on it again. And by putting it away I could let it go and rest from the hard work. I had forgotten that and it seems really useful. I like how it is empowering ~ I get some choice about the pace of the hard work. I can take breaks rather than just run away or go into numbing. That’s quite a change of perspective on difficult healing work.

    Thanks Karen.

    1. Gel

      September 24, 2013 at 11:49 PM

      Sorry about the type-os I guess I should read before I post rather than after I post !ha ha.
      meant to type “IT would be there when I was ready to work on it again. And I think there is another type-o but I’m too tired to mention.
      Good night!

      1. KarenBeth

        September 25, 2013 at 1:41 PM

        Hi Gel …. love your comment back 🙂 and YES I love the “putting it away” idea .. Andy calls it “leave it with me, and I will hold onto this until you come back to session” .. same thing and I have a hard time doing it sometimes.. it’s hard to leave such hard pain sometimes.

        Thank you for your nice comment 🙂 I always look forward to your imput

  • lifeconfusions

    September 27, 2013 at 3:32 PM

    Ah, I can so relate with you on this.
    I’ve been struggling with these scars as well. But i think i just stapled them, closed them up. I’m too afraid to open them up. I’m afraid of what i’ll find.
    Anyways thank you for sharing this 🙂

    1. KarenBeth

      October 3, 2013 at 8:12 AM

      I used to feel the same way, but sometimes you have to step out of your comfort zone and take a risk to open a wound and heal it the way it should be.. scary I know .. thank you for reading my blogs and the comments.. I love the connection.

      1. lifeconfusions

        October 4, 2013 at 4:03 PM

        You are right..but that step is hard to take but I guess eventually we all have to take it…very well said.

        And Pleasure was all mine….I feel the same way 🙂

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