In which I quote Dora and the Bible and reassure you that I’m fine. Basically.

I know it’s hard to read about someone else’s pain.

Well, unless you’re an asshole, I suppose.

But for most people, coming face to face with someone’s heartache and fear and doubts – and not being able to do a damn thing about it – that’s rough.  And man, when I feel pain, I feel pain.  And I pour it onto the screen with words, and I know it makes you hurt, too.

But I want you to know…

I’m OK.

Yes, I hurt.  Yes, I struggle.  Yes, I’m staring at my innards even more than usual lately.  Yes, this is some hard, hard shit right now and there is pain.

But, I’m not afraid of pain.

I don’t like it, mind you.  I stomp my feet and say “but I don’t wanna hurt anymore!”  I say, repeatedly, how much hurt and pain sucks.  Sucks bad.

But I’m not afraid of it.

I’m not running from it.

Because I believe that pain is both temporary and necessary.

Life always gets better.  Always.  It’s the natural order of things.  Unless you really dig your nails in and cling to the muck, life is made for getting better.  If you are willing to immerse yourself, the stream will always, always take you to some place better.

Nothing is permanent.

Especially not pain.

But sometimes, you have to be willing to let the stream carry you through the pain before you get to the some place better.  You can’t go over it.  You can’t go under it.  You certainly can’t go around it.  You have to, at times, hold your breath and just go through it.

Pain is not all bad.  When I was a kid, I used to wake up in the middle of the night screaming because my bones hurt so bad.  Growing pains.  (Yes, fuckers, even my short little ass had growing pains. )  Not even our bodies can grow without pain.

And our souls – our hearts – our lives, really, are like that, too.

We have to go through intense pain sometimes to really grow.  To learn.  To make changes.

Without the pain and the realization that things have to be done differently, we’d never get beyond infancy.

The only time I’ve ever forgotten this was when I was battling with depression.  Depression is a nasty, nasty thing that robs you of faith and hope and perspective.  But I’ve noticed in going through all of this on anti-depressants that the pain is rarely bigger than my faith.

I am not afraid to cry.  I’m not afraid to doubt.  I’m not afraid to face myself and the things I’m not satisfied with.  I’m not afraid to go ahead and be afraid for a little while.  I’ve hurt before, and I’ve survived.  I’ll hurt again, and I’ll survive that, too.  It’s what we do.

They say that there is a season for everything.  A time to laugh and a time to weep.  A time to break down and a time to build up.  A time to love and a time to hate.  For everything, there is a season.

This may be my season for pain, and that’s OK.

I know as well as I know anything, there’s always a new season around the corner.

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