True Pain knows True Joy

I miss her everyday.
Sunrise beach clean up with my son Elias today was,  well…  Beautiful sunrise, amazing waves, and the remnants of yesterdays celebrations scattered for miles.  It is constitution day in Mexico.  We gathered 3 bags of discarded plastic and styrofoam.   It was an amazing, disheartening, beautiful, difficult, joyful, challenging experience.  For many reasons.

So, Ive been reflecting and asking.  How does one survive the tragedies of life?  How do we get through times of utter pain, despair, hurt beyond knowledge?

The thing is… pain is real.  Deep suffering occurs because something happened to you.  And you have choices.  You can choose how you deal with your suffering.  However, there are wrong ways to suffer.  Or maybe I should say there are ways to suffer that only lead to more suffering.

We all suffer.  We all experience pain.   And when we push the pain away, distract ourselves, pretend that it didn’t happen, we only create an underlying anxiety.  The pain doesn’t go away if you simply cover it up.  It remains unseen.  And the anxiety of hiding the pain is often more painful than the pain itself.

So, I do my very best to brave the darkness, allow the hurt and let my little light shine. Moment by moment by moment, Feeling it.  I’ve said it before… and I’ll say it again.  To know true joy, you must experience pain (we all experience pain).  So don’t cover it up- brave those dark moments. Cry.  Hurt. Allow.  Be.   If everything in life was rainbows and roses…  we wouldn’t appreciate it.  We wouldn’t know that rainbows are promising and special. And roses smell sweet and hold color and beauty.   We know this because we have seen stinky trash, land fills, pollution and more.

I am going to make some a bold statements here.  There is joy in pain.  There is pleasure in displeasure.  There is good in bad.  There is beauty in ugliness.
To know the good is to know the bad.
Love hurts.

As a parent who lost a child, as a woman who has suffered through an abusive marriage, as a mother of living children that I hurt for daily, I know pain.  And I have the wonderful, beautiful, amazing gift of knowing love.

And I conclude, one of the greatest gifts you can give your children is allowing them to suffer.  To suffer the natural consequences of ones own choices is part of the process to finding true joy.  
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