Wait – what? What does that even mean – “Never waste your pain”? Are you crazy??
I heard it said on a TV show yesterday and it touched me deep enough that I had to write it down.
Never waste your pain. If you had said this to me even just 3 months ago, I would have laughed sarcastically and rolled my eyes in irritation. I had no control over certain things that happened to me: incest, absence of a maternal instinct and cruel family members. I had no control of the pain inflicted upon me. How could I waste it? Hell, I wish I had never had it!
But – that is the way we see things when we are in the midst of all the pain, when our eyes are blinded, our hearts broken, our thoughts foggy and confused. Not much good can be seen when we are in such a state. I heard something else the other day, “Terrible things happen to really good people.” Yes, they do. It sucks. It’s unfair. But it is reality. It’s no different than the fact that many times good things happen to really bad people. The best thing we can realize is that we have no control over it, all we can do is the best we can with whatever life we’ve been handed. Honestly, and it took me forever to realize and accept this, the bad things that happen to us do not make us bad or worthless. What if God, or destiny or fate, whatever we believe in, chose us for the pain because they knew we were strong enough to survive it, because they knew we could ultimately turn it around, learn from it and do something positive with it. What a waste it would have been had I let the pain get the best of me – it would have all been for nothing.
Don’t get me wrong, even as I write this, I still have doubts about my own belief in this idea. But here’s the thing, on my path to healing, I have realized and begun to understand a lot of things. As young as 10 years old, I knew I wanted to do something in this world to help others. And now, after everything bad that has happened to me, here I am, sharing my story of pain and survival, discovering that in the process I have been helping others. I am, in a very real sense, not wasting my pain!
I no longer allow pain to own me, to control me. It takes effort and constant reminders but it is the road I have chosen, the road I want to take. I don’t know if I could ever say that all the pain was worth it – I’d be lying if I did – but since I had no choice in the pain, then I am glad I can now try to use it for good. There have been fellow bloggers along the way that have told me my words and thought have helped them. Is there anything better than that? I can’t ask for anything more.
Never waste your pain. That means so much to me now…