How Great is Our God in HEBREW,

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

When Staying is the Hardest Thing

This following post was written by a good friend and fellow sufferer of mental illness, Larry Drain.  You may recall that I'd featured another post of his in my blog here.  The one that I want to share with you today appeared in his blog called "Hopeworks Community" yesterday.   Larry has once again graciously given me permission to reprint his thoughts here for the enjoyment of my readers as well.  His words speak eloquently for themselves from the heart of one who loves and lives with another sufferer in the midst of his own pain.  My marriage too, is comprised of this odd sharing/viewing combination of pain where both partners suffer our own unique forms of pain and yet also care about and suffer through the viewing of and living with the pain of our partner.   Any marriage or partnership where mental illness plays a part, contains a great element of challenge.  But when both parties bear the weight of burden, it can at times be intolerably difficult.  And I say that this is true of any kind of pain; any kind of suffering. I personally can attest to, suffering both physical and mental illness.

Here without further comment is Larry 's article:
Sometimes to stay is the hardest thing.
When misery and pain seem inevitable rather it be to you or someone you love perhaps the hardest thing is to stay in the moment.  I know.
Life feels so out of control and doing anything that gives you a sense of control seems so worthwhile.  Maybe it is to wrap yourself in a sense of rage.  Perhaps it is an endless examination of “what if’s.”  Sometimes it is a search for a distraction that actually distracts.
Sometimes there seems no way to fight and no way to flee so you simply freeze.  You know the car is about to hit you, but you hope that moment of first sight lasts forever and you try to become so numb, so still, so little that it does.  But it never works.
Sometimes all you can do it stay.  Pain is inevitable and you will hurt.  But I try to hold onto the fact that because life is out of my control that it doesnt (sicc) mean it is out of control.  The important things are still important.  The principles that guide and structure what I do, what I say, what I am still remain.
While pain may be inevitable it is not unending even when that seems to be the truest thing about it. In finding the space where it is not perhaps I can find the strength to live where it is.
I do not know why some people hurt and I especially do not know why some people hurt a lot.  I comfort myself by telling myself that is a good thing not to know.  I am not strong enough, wise enough, or brave enough to cope with such knowledge.
In the end all I really know is that people hurt.  When you can do something about it to refuse leaves you scarred or defeated even when you dont see it or know it.  Turning your head leaves you eventually unable to see regardless of where you look.  When you see it all you can do is try to hold and hug and tell them it is not forever.  Sometimes all you can do it hurt that they hurt.
Sometimes I really hate having to stay.  But then I know there is no place better to be.  And I know when it ends I will be glad I stayed.  I tell myself what matters the most is not the kind of trouble a person has, but the kind of person who has the trouble.
Love matters.  Of this I am absolutely sure.  In the end I stay not because I am especially brave or especially wise or especially anything.  I stay because love matters.  I wish the pain would go and get lost and never come back.  I pray it ever so hard.  But even in the prayer I know it untrue.  Pain has its season.  But my refuge is clear and compelling to me.  Love is of all seasons and in it I find true hope that better times are coming.
*(emphases are my own)

Thank you Larry, once more for causing me to think and to feel once more the crux of what it is we battle and  why we are so desperately important to each other.  Because if we do not have the others in our lives who are invested in our suffering and in our survival...then what do we have? And it is in the acceptance of that burden that we commit in return to be there for the one we love who also hurts.

Here is the link to Larry's blog where you may read other thoughts of his. Hopeworks Community
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