Sunday, December 16, 2007

"And you have to carry it with You"

I was talking to a dear friend the other day. We were discussing the common problem of people trying to "fix" your problems with a glib line.
I mentioned that the fact that "It could be worse" is not a helpful thing to tell people, even though it is generally true. This is a line that we can tell ourselves, but not others. When we say "It could be worse" to ourselves, that is exactly the message we are transmitting. When someone ELSE says it, the unspoken message is: therefore you should not feel bad nor complain.
I have written elsewhere that this is like taking a large stone and throwing it on someone's foot. Knowing that the leg does not require amputation as a result does not remove the pain from the injury to the foot. The pain exists, and you are allowed to acknowledge it.
Precisely then my wise friend added in:
"Then you have to go on with life, and carry it with you."
Yes, precisely. Carry it with you. Don't let it tie you down like a ball and chain….Instead, let your spirit soar, and squeeze that pain (even while accepting its existence), to a size that you can fly with. If not today, so tomorrow, or the day after….

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