While reading Love Warrior, by Glennon Doyle, this sentence jumped off the page at me...
"But the paradox of pain is that it is only universal in retrospect. In the present, it is fiercely personal."
Society and culture tell us that pain is not ‘right.’
If you are in pain, especially the invisible kind, you’ve probably been bombarded with messages and tactics to avoid, get over, dismiss, move on, get positive, get distracted, times out on your pain allowance. And how often when you see someone hurting do you quickly try to fix it, or relate, or obsess over the ‘right’ thing to say. We don’t like to be reminded of our own pain and that’s exactly what other hurting souls do. They ping us deep where we know the universal truth of connectivity. If you’re in pain, I’m in pain. I don’t want to be in pain so maybe I can lift you out by doing x, y or z. If you’ve been on the receiving side of x, y or z when you were in pain there’s a good chance it infuriated you and you might have not known why.
"...pain is essential. It’s how we grow. We need our pain."
It’s because pain is essential. It’s how we grow. We need our pain. We need to value and honor the pains. Acknowledge the pain. That’s all it really wants. We can try to neatly pack away and hide our pain, but rarely is there anything neat and tidy about pain. It wants the light. Its going to come out. Why not invite your pain into the light? Offer your pain loving validation. Perhaps then the pain will ‘lighten’ and lift off.
“The wound is the place where the light enters you.” -Rumi
Create space for your pain and for others’ pain without the need to control or shame it. Embody the full human experience.