Jul. 4, 2017

My 1am rambling about strength

Comparing pain levels with others’ doesn’t help anyone. I am told by other people that they wish they were as strong as I am, considering how much pain and sickness I live with.  They tell me that what I deal with would crumble others.  While I appreciate the sentiment, I don’t want to be known for being strong through pain.  I was raised to believe that vulnerability or anything less than total strength is weakness, and weakness is unacceptable.  While I know otherwise, the ingrained training is still there.  I have to fight through my moments of weakness and do my best to ignore pain.  It’s a hell of a fight.  And if others show that they have weakness or show that they’re in pain, I don’t think of them as weak.  I think of them as honest and strong because they don’t care what others think when they have their moments.

Many of my friends start to tell me about the pain that they live with, then they stop and say, “well it’s not as bad as yours.”  I have a plea.  Do not compare your pain to mine.  They are different.  I also ask that if you think about saying something about comparing your pain to someone else’s, don’t.  Think about the heart of the person you’re speaking to.  No matter how much pain they live with, whether it’s from cancer, illness, or injury, they don’t want to think of you in pain or to hear you minimize it for their “benefit”.  At least that’s my heart.  A friend started to mention the pain she has in her back, neck, and shoulders due to her line of work.  I would take her pain in less than a heartbeat because I love her and don’t want anything bad for her.  Then she said hers is nothing compared to the pain I live with.  We all have pain.  Though she would disagree, mine isn’t worse than hers.  At least that’s my opinion.  I’m no better than she is.  In fact, I know she’s a hell of a lot better of a person than I am and am so grateful that she doesn’t have to fight what I do.

Another friend asked me why I fight to be strong.  My response?  I have no choice.  I want to be able to show one person who may be fighting similar things that they too, can be strong, can be okay.  That they can have a life while they fight for it.  However, I also want to show them that it’s okay to be weak sometimes.  To be completely honest, being strong wears me out.  The moments that I allow myself to be weak allow me to relax and breathe.  This whole thing is what I want to encourage someone else to do.  Being strong is a good thing, but allowing for weak moments is, too.  We have to give ourselves a break sometimes and if someone else thinks I’m wrong, they can step. 

Live your life the way you want, strong, weak, or both.  Just make sure you find a way to do it happily.  And don’t forget.  Don’t compare your pain to someone else’s.  You are fighting different things.

Until laters beautifuls…be safe and be kind to one another.