When I was a little girl, I was practicing my jump roping skills while playing near the back door of our house. Just as I was raising my legs to jump, the door opened and met my bended knee, causing a huge gash with lots of blood and lots of tears.
First aid was quickly applied but the hurt remained for days and weeks. Every time I bent my knee, the wound would bust open, requiring more first aid. Eventually the wound began to heal and a scab began to form. Still very tender though, the scab could easily be knocked off with the slightest bump, therefore starting the healing process all over again.
In time the wound became more resilient to the rough and tumble bumps of childhood. The scab became smaller as new skin grew. No longer did it bleed upon contact however the area remained tender for months.
50 years later, I can still recall the pain. What was once a tremendous source of hurt is now a permanent scar that will forever be a part of me. The older I get, the less visible the scar is. But it is still there. It will never go away.
This is also a description of grief. The pain of loss is forever etched in our hearts. We remember the deep hurt experienced in the early days of grief. We recall the moments that bumped our hearts and therefore brought us back to the first moments of grief. We reflect on the healing of our broken heart, no longer a gaping wound but oh so tender. Eventually the pain of a broken heart begins to subside - little by little, piece by piece - but our heart will never be the same. It has been permanently scarred.
What was once something so broken has been replaced with a scar that will never go away. In time, it may even become difficult to see but you know exactly where it is. It is who you are as you grieve for who you love.