Judith Duerk, a very powerful facilitator of women’s circles once described our wounded selves like sieves. She suggested that over time the vessel we are becomes punched full of holes, a metaphor for wounds. Then, as we receive love, we are too wounded, too full of holes to be able to hold that love. In order to hold love, we first need to seal the holes–heal the wounds.

Whenever I am wanting more love, but not feeling it, I now know it is time to check on the holes in my sieve to see if I’m not able to feel and hold the love because of some wound in me that is leaking love away.

It takes courage to look at a wound. And it takes compassion to heal it. The greater the compassion, the greater the healing. Often, my own wound has scared me so much, I was only willing to take a cursory look at it or I opted to avoid dealing with it at all.

Once I sat down and stayed with the wound long enough to understand it–to really, deeply understand it at its core, I found it really wasn’t as frightening an experience as I had imagined it would be. I also discovered as soon as I understood, my compassion rose up in me immediately and the process of healing at my core began.

With persistence, my sieve became a solid vessel once again, and only now and then do I find a new hole that needs my compassion.

Next: How Blame Limits Our Healing Ability