Recently, while in session with a group at Milestones, I was sharing part of my story. One of the participants questioned, “after all this time you still go through this stuff? When does it end?” I smiled, thinking, that’s what we want with pain, we want it to end! In our modern culture and particularly in the west, we have decided pain has no purpose and the moment we feel it, we must get rid of that feeling, no matter what. In it’s most base line form, it’s a back ache that we pop Advil for, or an emotionally draining conversation that we drink a glass of wine at, or hurt feelings that we cover with chocolate cake. It’s harmless, kind of, until all the sudden, it’s bigger than that. The Advil becomes pain pills. The drink becomes 5 drinks, everyday. The cake becomes 100 extra pounds. Until eventually we need a coping mechanism for our coping mechanism. So, we go to a doctor who gives us a pill to help us stop taking the other pill. Before long, we go back, because “it isn’t working” and we need more.
I believe it’s time we stop. I believe it’s time we listen. Pain comes for a reason. It is not a wicked evil thing that we must be rid of. It comes to teach to show us what we need to move through. Sadness is okay. Grief is okay. Being flooded and frozen by those emotions is what happens when we resist them in their infancy. If at the first sign of pain we didn’t decide the pain must go, but rather ask it why it came, I wonder how long it would actually stay.
So, to answer my client’s question, “your still going through this stuff?” Well, yes and no. Yes, I feel. Yes, I feel sad, sometimes and happy, sometimes. No, I am not flooded by pain nor am I frozen in it. No, I don’t resist it and yes, I do resist it, because I’m a human and I’m still learning and I’ll be learning till the last breath I take. However, most of the time I don’t resist it. I observe and question and turn it over.
The most astounding idea I have run across is fundamentally opposite of the culture I live in. Just because I feel pain, doesn’t mean I have to stop it. It will pass, everything does. Life is a flow, like the ocean. It’s never high tide all the time, or low tide all the time. It’s both and it takes both.
Let your pain happen. Listen to it. Pain has a voice. Take out a journal and a pen and ask it, “why are you hear and what do you want to say?”. You’ll be amazed at what you write.
sending you Love wherever you are in the world.