What I Wish I Knew About Emotional Pain
Understanding the pain body, trauma, triggers and all the painfully deep dark shadowy parts of being a human.
Here I am again, back in my ego, DEEP in my ego… that moment of clarity has passed. I feel yearning, a pain in my heart, not enough, an emptiness in my stomach, grief of a loss, grief of all losses.
Do you ever wonder what you’re actually feeling sadness for? What it is that hurts the most? I think it’s easy to confuse one feeling for another, we think we’re upset because of what someone said, did or didn’t do but are we really?
Whatever it is, I know that this will pass. I know that I can meditate and connect with the peace within, and I know this pain will ease. I know that the world is full of good, that I have so very much to feel grateful for and there is no lack. In reality, there is no loss and underneath this pain, heartache and yearning, there is only joy.
Does this knowing, this understanding make this pain less painful? Maybe a little… also ABSOLUTELY NOT! A bit of both! This duality to me, is very clearly the root of all human suffering and the awareness of this duality, is both comforting and frustrating.
I know 'this stuff' but knowing it and putting it into practice is very different.
I guess you can call it spiritual awakening teething pains?
I have read many books depicting the struggle of these two 'minds' our two 'sides', naming it the monkey and the human, the conscious and the unconscious, the ego and the soul, God and the devil. All good examples of the human complex and the suffering we must endure until we reach enlightenment. When those moments of clarity become just… clarity.
I think the only thing for me to do in this moment, is the same as what we can only ever do in all moments, just be as we are, process, observe and see what we need.
My mind is telling me I need answers, I need to understand, I need to be held, be loved and feel wanted. The question I’d like to ask myself is what then? Will I feel better? Will the answers and understanding bring me clarity? Closure? Will being held and loved by some external force allow me to feel fully held and loved once that moment passes? I’m not sure it will.
My teacher once said to me… If you have a cold and you take medication, you’ll be better in 7 days, if you have a cold and use a neti pot you’ll be better in 7 days and if you do nothing, you’ll be better in 7 days.
I think deep down I know this to be true for most things. We have to just sit with it process it and feel it. The more we try to distract ourselves with drink, drugs, people, TV, work (whatever your coping mechanism may be), the more time it takes to heal. We are masking the pain, running from it, burying it and while we push it down into darkness it festers, ferments, goes bad and turns to mould. Each time we are triggered, hurt, angry we are reminded that all the things we buried are still there and maybe now even more painful to face. It’s as if it's just waiting there for its next opportunity to resurface in which ever form it decides to take... Until we face it, move through it.
A very wise client of mine reflected that it’s like that children’s book where they go on an adventure and each time, they come to an obstacle they sing...
“We can’t go over it. We can’t go under it. We’ve got to go through it”.
Not going through it is like continuously walking up and down the edge of the big dark forest, arguing with all who cross your path, picking up sticks, digging a hole and all the while pretending that the big dark forest is not there or that your original intention was to never actually spend all your time playing at the edge but instead discovering what is waiting for you at the other side.
It can be really scary for many of us. We fear that if we sit with emotional pain, it will become too much, that it will consume us. But I believe we can only be consumed by it if we are at war with it.
Being at peace with it is what brings the healing.
Sitting with emotional pain like you would sit with a child that's in pain, hold it, shower it with love and compassion rather than sitting with it, staring at it like you hate it and wishing it wasn’t there.
The former leads to healing the latter leads to more pain.
So I know what I need to do... be still, breathe, feel the pain.
Don’t fight it, be angry or resent that it’s there. Not try to run and hide from it or deny it. All emotions, good or bad are all equal, all part of being human and all bring their own blessings. If I wasn’t feeling this way today, I couldn’t have felt inspired to write this for you to read and maybe it helped one of you just a little, enough to make some kind of difference.
I hope through my practice I can have more moments of clarity and less time with my pain body activated. I hope I can feel worthy, held and loved despite the need and want of someone ‘making’ me feel that way.
I intend to sit, process and observe instead of reacting and be the light in the darkness.
No one is happy, positive and clear/connected all of the time. Expecting yourself to be or thinking other people are, is just another illusion in this world that full of them.
Wherever you are, whatever you’re feeling, be still, become aware, you will know what to do next.
Sending you all love & healing
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