Wednesday, 16 March 2016
THE THING ABOUT PAIN
THE THING ABOUT PAIN
I recently went through a very emotional experience that made my life reach a halt. Literally halt.
I can only explain it as pain. It was very intense and very crippling.
It wasn’t my first experience with pain but this one was different, and very personal.
My first ever debilitating pain was when my mum passed on. It wasn’t the pain that hit you at that time. It came way later and way after the funeral had passed.
My mind took two years to adjust because I would dream that she was out there somewhere and was going to come back. I was going crazy almost wondering if my dream was my reality or my reality was a dream. On top of it I had new responsibilities to handle and take charge as the oldest in the home to make sure our lives were still as normal as possible.
Eventually my needs took a back seat and I put everyone else’s needs around me ahead of mine.
That was a very, very bad idea.
What eventually happened is that I lost a lot of years living through the motions. I never really thought about what I wanted or what I wanted to achieve out of my life.
It took a while to take time and re-evaluate my life and see how unhappy I was. I was physically ok, but emotionally drained. I gave away so much of myself to others, but no one was refilling my emotional tank.
The only thing that actually helped is that I wasn’t the only one who had experienced the loss, so speaking to my siblings did help a lot and they completely got where I was coming from and we made the adjustments to share the responsibilities. Took a while but I can say we all got into a healthy place with our grief and now celebrate more the life my mum had and what she taught us than the fact that she is not there.
SO just in case you may or may not know, there are 5 stages of grief. Some have up to seven but let’s stick to five.
It is not wise to stay in one stage for too long. It is wise to progress, even though we cannot always help it and we can stay in one stage for more than we should. You also cannot rush the process.
We tend to go through this process every time something traumatic happens. I have even experienced it with my work, especially when a client is not happy or if things just aren’t going as planned and I am stuck in a rut. Picking oneself up is not always easy.
Sometimes God allows this because he wants to stretch you, read more on that in my previous article TRANSITION SEASON
Last year, I went through a new pain, one of heart break.
It is so interesting how you can take all measures to protect yourself from it but sometimes it is inevitable.
I learnt that sometimes God will allow certain experiences to stretch you.
I learnt that I had compromised a lot and went back to the cycle of not looking out for what I wanted or deserved.
I learnt that I was making all the sacrifices and I was feeling resentful without knowing.
I learnt that I am worth more and I deserve more than I was getting.
And yes I also learnt that I do not ever want to feel like that ever again but I am also strong and God brought me through that experience. I am still in the stage of accepting and letting go, but it’s not always easy. And i am still learning.
The thing about keeping busy so you don’t think about it can sometimes work at a disadvantage because you can easily shelve something and it comes back later in greater intensity or in another form. It’s always wise to work through something not skip it.
Yes with that experience I did go through the stages of grief. My anger phase was pretty scary, I barely recognized myself. I have a good friend who refused to allow me to get too much into the depression phase and if it weren’t for her I would not be in the acceptance phase.
I found out there is a new phase. The indifference phase. For some reason it is not an official phase but I have been there for a while now. But because I write this blog and it’s a great outlet for me, I am slowly getting out of it.
I figured I cannot endorse things publicly that I do not do myself.
Am sure you have seen very unhealthy ways people can process pain, some get into substance abuse, some abuse their bodies, some even end their lives.
Either way my advice to you is, process your pain, and process it in a healthy way. The world still goes on so do not miss out because of one experience.
Emotional pain does affect your life but it is up to you on how it will.