“When you learn how to suffer, you suffer much less.”
Thich Nhat Hanh
Most of my readers have an invisible illness, most with chronic pain. Many more conditions arise for one who “suffers” from chronic pain: depression, anxiety, insomnia, and often times thoughts of suicide. Most of you know I am not going to write there is a cure to chronic pain or this medicine or that medicine will help you. That is my philosophy after spending ten plus years searching for that cure or medication. However, you are each on different paths in your journey with chronic pain and life. I have written this many times but there is a big difference between pain and suffering as to why I put quotation marks around the word suffers. However, this amazing man, Thich Nhat Hanh (an true healer, and someone I wish I could one day be but in this lifetime, that will not happen….have a lot to learn before I could ever reach his level of altruism.
I guess you could say I have learned how to “suffer” which has helped my suffering decrease to amazing degrees. I will always have chronic pain: that is not fair to write because I cannot predict the future. I have chronic pain and will not look for a cure or take any medications most TBI patients would take for physical pain. During the years I was searching for a cure and taking medications prescribed for pain my suffering was unbearable. I now know how to suffer from chronic pain: not that it is in any way, shape or form easy. One has to come to a point of acceptance before he or she can even begin to manage pain naturally. If you are reading this, you will get there. You would not be reading a blog written by a woman who is writing about living with chronic pain, accepting it, and finding happiness despite pain. Trust me.
There is an angel in my life and for once I am using the term angel and not speaking of my daughter, Kayci. A woman who I look up to and respect more than any woman in the world. She has known me at my worst and at my best and continues to challenge me in ways that sometimes make me want to scream. I was with her yesterday and she was on me about certain things that I did not want to face nor deal with. I was in defense mode and in some ways pissed. Until, she broke through to me. I am not going into details of anything we were talking about but I want you to all know what I learned. If you are suffering because of chronic pain or because you are in a tough spot in your life, you must create the things you want in your life. I just totally lost all of you, don’t give up reading this yet. I will set an example of what I am trying to convey but which is clearly not coming out in the way I would like it to. If you are sad, angry or feel any sort of pain because of any person in your life that means a lot you are bound to express this anger, frustration and at times rage. Anger is pain. Our first instinct when we feel we are wronged is to fight back, defend ourselves, and this usually leads to added stress and pain. I now see that I need to create the atmosphere and life I desire despite any pain I feel. I always write: be kind, even when people are mean to you. They are fighting battles you know nothing about. I believe this with every fiber of my being. However, this is difficult when it comes to the people we love. Am I suffering in different areas of my life: yes. Are most of us: yes. I am just learning now how to suffer in order to decrease the amount of pain the suffering causes. I need to create the environment I want and the environment I want for my loved ones. If I desire peace, happiness, acceptance, love and compassion I must give that to all those I love even if they have hurt me because they are hurting too. This is very difficult. But, if we (and many of you have) can change the way you suffer from chronic pain, you can change the way you suffer about any problems that arise in your life. Life is a journey. I am a person that wants to know answers now. I want to know right now that all the things I desire will come to fruition. I want to be happy and healed this second and make all those I love feel the same. That is just not possible. The only thing I can do is begin to create the life and atmosphere I desire and we all deserve.
We are all in different places in our lives and life will continue to give you the same test over and over again until you pass.
Keep your faith, I have kept mine: Anyone can.