Sunday, January 20, 2013


I find stillness in times of pain

This past spring I spent a weekend with some good friends in a cabin near Lava Hot Springs, Idaho. My girls had a great time playing outside on the rope swing and running around with the other kids.  The cabin was set on a hill and a long set of steps built into the hill lead up to the cabin door.  The stairs were built from old railway ties and it was a tough climb for the short legs of my 4 year-old.  On one of her many trips running up the steps she slipped.  As she caught herself several slivers from the wood lodged in her hands.

She came running to me in tears and asking for help.  I could see that the slivers had not completely slid under her skin so I borrowed some tweazers and told her that we would have to pull them out.  She went from distraught to full fledged panic in an instant.  No amount of explaining the procedure or the need to take them out soothed her.  The first attempt to pull one free resulted in a scream that could have shattered glass. She started to flail about and her tiny little body seemed to suddenly possess the strength of Hercules.  She resisted all my efforts to calm her and it was impossible to get her to hold still. It eventually took 3 of us, (me holding her, someone distracting her, and another working the tweezers) and 30 minutes to remove three small slivers.

My daughter provided me with an example of what I sometimes do when I get emotionally wounded.  If I get hurt or I need help, instead of practicing serenity I get frantic.  I think it is a way for me to avoid or distract myself from the pain.  I know the only way to get better is to be still and address the pain but instead I will often freak out and get lost in the drama of the situation.  Even when I scream out for help to my Higher Power or those around me, when that help comes I'm too busy fighting against it to even recognize the assistance being offered. 

When I feel pain I will learn to be still and experience it.  I will be open to the lessons it is trying to teach me and I will accept help when it comes.  I will practice serenity and stillness even in times of pain and chaos. 


  1. I missed your affirmations the past couple of days! Glad to have you back.

    Great post. In times that I struggle with pain, both physical and emotional, it's very hard to see things around me with clarity when I'm focused on what hurts. It's a challenge to navigate through pain with grace, and I'm always amazed to hear stories of individuals doing just that in far worse situations than those I'm presented with. Pain as a teacher...I'll keep that in mind moving forward.

  2. Pain certainly is not my preferred method of learning, but it seems to get through to me when other things do not. Those who do it gracefully are inspiring.