Pushing through the Pain… one step at a time

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I started running again to get prepared to run my second annual 5K for our local Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure that is coming up on Mother’s Day and I literally have not run for a few months. I am recording my blog post thoughts as I am running and I can definitely hear the pain of exertion in my voice… running like I did on that most dreaded treadmill  of mine during the winter just didn’t push me in the same way like running outside does.  So I have to push through this pain…one step…one foot stride at a time.

There are so many times in our lives that we need to push through the pain… whether it is the pain due to lack of exercise and being de-conditioned… or it could be the pain of breaking up with a significant other…  or the pain of death and dying… the pain of chronic illness (or acute illness for that matter)… or possibly the pain of  going through addiction or watching someone we love go through addiction.

There are so many times in our lives that we need to push through the pain but pushing though that pain can bring us comfort and joy in so many ways.  Pain = comfort and joy?  I must be crazy – right?  Who would ever think that pain is a source of joy?  Let me explain:

As I am running while recording this,  I cannot believe how good I am feeling even though my leg muscles are tighter than tight and I am definitely on the de-conditioned end of the physical health spectrum… I feel great when I am back on track and pushing through the pain. I feel strong. I feel confident. I feel beautiful.

Pushing through the pain of grieving… it is amazing how so many people show up when we are grieving… people we might have never thought would be there for us and care so much.  The comfort we feel is a thing of beauty as people come and share their stories, their hugs, their tears and their laughter with us.  Memories create joy as we think about those who have died.

Pushing through the pain of losing a relationship or losing a connection with someone you love or have loved feels like a deep ache within us.  As we go through stages in our lives sometimes  relationships end but that ending may be good.  We may find ending a relationship is the best thing we can do for ourselves and possibly those around us.  Some of us may have been in abusive relationships or relationships fueled by alcohol or chemical dependency.  To move beyond those relationship allows us to regain the confidence and self esteem that are typically lost in those relationships. We persevere… we become stronger.

How about pushing through the pain of addiction?  I have seen the joy and heard  the excitement when an addict pushes through the pain of denying himself/herself the next “hit”, or the person who self-mutilates stops themselves from making the next cut. They feel worthy to push through the pain… they begin to truly believe that life has much better things in store for them.

Pain is not a bad thing… it can be healthy. It protects us when we are in an unsafe situation or vulnerable. We need to feel pain so it can protect us.  When we recognize pain and feel it, we can move  away from it and potentially save ourselves from harm.  If I stick my hand in a fire, I want to pull that sucker out FAST or I am going to get burned.  If I am in a dysfunctional relationship due to addiction, I need to get out by either creating a healthy environment within the relationship (learning healthy behaviors) or create a healthy environment by moving outside of it…

Pain can be good… it can be healthy…  it can be beautiful and comforting.

How has pain made your life better?

What are some of the ways that you have successfully coped with pain?

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