Pain and Pushing Through

March 29, 2010

Today I witnessed a girlfriend’s breaking heart

…and my child’s cramping leg.

Each one a casualty of unfamiliar and unforeseen pain,

they braved their injuries.

My five year old son cried frequently every time his hurt leg set down to carry his weight.  My friend gracefully carried her burden with eyes only barely reddened by earlier tears.

When I see people that I care for go through the inevitable aches of life, my first instinct is to lift them up and assure them that everything will be alright.  Behind that instinct creeps the fear that something more sinister lies in wait.  That they might not recover.  I am an admitted paranoiac who constantly talks myself down from ledges of irrational worry.  But, ultimately, there is nothing that the human spirit cannot survive.  This becomes especially obvious if one is a person of faith in a higher power.  It is inspirational to me to see the strength in those suffering and the power and responsibility of the rest of us to impress hope upon them.  I’m not saying that depression won’t set in or that a kind of death will never come before it is welcomed, just that we are all justified in pushing through and insisting that better days are yet to come.

I’ve dealt with various levels of loss.  None would I consider personal tragedies, though some were agonizing.  My mind wanders to friends and family who are dealing with eminent tragic loss, and I keep going back to the hope and prayer that they will find within themselves the prescience that joy will be as possible as pain is unavoidable.

Later this evening, my son’s painful leg muscle relaxed in a hot bath with some gently coaxed stretching.  My friend’s heartache will undoubtedly take longer to heal.

Our physical and emotional scars mark a living history.

Whether we carry them with pride, prejudice or shame,

they are indelible proof that we have survived,

or better yet that we have LIVED.


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