11 July 2010

Pain

In my last post about sacred days, I mentioned pain. The pain that lies bring.

Several years ago, I spasmed one of the tiny muscles in my neck, and was in the most pain I’ve ever felt. Middle of the night, I’m screaming myself awake. Can’t move, just gasp and hope it goes away.

I had a friend who heard my cries and came, bearing little pills that helped. I swallowed, and the pain begin to ebb. Not gone, but less.

Believing lies is like that. I lay, knowing that it hurts, it hurts, it hurts, but not able to find relief. It takes another to bring truth, to lay open the thing that hurts so hurt can flow away.

When I believe that all “real life” must have adventure, excitement, or meaning that I comprehend and even create, I look at the life I’m actually living and feel pain.

My days, filled with working, caring for my home, loving on my husband and my baby, are a lot of things, but they aren’t exciting. And when I compare them with the life The Lie says I should be living, my days feel downright tawdry in comparison.

I wonder if I’m doing it right, and what’s wrong with me that my life isn’t filled with all of those things.

I feel pain.

I feel the pain of not being good enough, because if I was then I’d have that life I’m supposed to have.

I feel the pain of having, somehow, failed at something I don’t quite understand.

I feel the pain of being discontent, of not being comfortable in my own shoes or even my own home, of wanting more and more and more and never feeling full.

And I respond to that pain.

Sometime after I start wondering and usually while I’m still wandering through my thoughts, I stop inhabiting the life I have. I breathe in and out and I fulfill my tasks, but I hate every moment of it, and myself in all of it. I come to despise the things I have to do every day and the fact that I don’t have the time or the money to pursue everything that interests me.

I pull back, in, up, wherever I can to go protect myself and I look for the fulfillment other places. The life I have feels empty, so I look for a new one, look to fill that emptiness with something that will fill the space to overflowing.

I think some of the “soft” addictions that so many in our culture struggle with come from this sort of emptiness. Normal days don’t satisfy, so we look to supplement. The internet, the television, video games, and more can all serve to make this place feel more full.

But they can’t fill us.

Cognitively, we all know that. But still we try, because most of us don’t want to walk out on our lives entirely. Yet we feel pain, and we do what we can to alleviate that.

It’s a never-ending circle of unhappiness where discontent leads to pain leads to filling leads to more discontent. And we feel like we’ll never get off.

5 comments:

Matthew said...

Sounds like perhaps God is inviting you into learning contentment. And maybe humility?

Tammy said...

Hi Sarah.
I don't so much have a lot of consolation. I feel all out of my element there, but I will say this: I totally love your honesty here- Not the fact that you are feeling this much pain. But to me the fact that you are willing to open yourself up like this is a very sacred thing.

To me, it is a sacred thing to hold in our hands someones grief. In my mind I begin to take off my shoes knowing that I am on holy ground. Therefore, I like to tread lightly on those tender and raw places.

What I mean is: I may make mistakes but I try to tread lightly with my words, knowing the vulnerability that this sorta confession of the soul requires. I respect you for your honesty here. It warms my heart.

Peace and love to you friend. Hold out your hand and I will grab hold from Tn and give you a hug of mercy. :)

terri said...

yes. i understand this.

much love to you sarah. i don't know what you're going through, but i hope you get some rest from it soon.

MM's said...

Hi Sarah.
I don't know you but I can relate to your post. Yes, lies can be painful. Whatever your struggle I pray that you can find a peace within yourself and allow God into your heart to help guide you. He (god) has been my constant guide and I pray that he continues to guide me in everyway.

MM's

Sarah said...

Thanks, all . . .

Matthew - probably both . . . though I'm coming to realize that humility means accepting reality as it is . . . or something like that.

Tammy - Love you . . . thanks for being with me here.

Terri - You're one of the best "companioners" I know . . . thank you so much.

MM - Welcome! Thank you for your sweet, sweet words.