Give me refuge from my craze
Let there be understanding where there was once
Let me be disciplined where I used to be
Let me be strong when I want to cave in and cry
Help me to forgive but retain the wisdom that
pain has taught me
Give me solace when my mind knows no rest
Stop the self-indulgent need to seek vengeance
What I have allowed to diminish me thus far
doesn’t deserve the power
I want to love life like I once did
All of this is powerful, but the part that really resonates with me is Help me to forgive but retain the wisdom that pain has taught me. It reminds me of the words by Ovid, Someday this pain will be useful to you. And why should we expect any less of pain? After all, isn’t the only benefit of pain the knowledge we glean from it? In the moment, it shatters us, but what matters is what we create from the shards. Someone somewhere is going to read this and roll their eyes, but let them. Pain teaches us how to be in pain—how to survive it, to make it through to the other side.
Every day, someone in the world makes it through something they thought would be unendurable; wear those moments in your life like armor. And I’m not just talking about physical pain. I’ve had three kidney stones, and not one of them was more painful than the unrequited loves I’ve held close at night while crying silently into my pillow.
What I want for you, what I want for myself, what I want for all of us, is to quit suppressing the truths that pain teaches us. Pain will be there no matter what, and if we allow it to make us stronger, it might hurt a little less the next time. Take care, my friends.
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