Let pain be
I sat in my car for over 30 minutes trying to find a different analogy to couch this story of pain in but none came. I really do not want to be vulnerable tonight. I’ve had a recent dry writing spell because the emotion I am processing through has been the same and frankly, I hate it. One thing is certain, I cannot speed up the natural healing process and pain is proof that healing isn’t done.
I’m fine. I’m over it. I’m doing the work. I know better who I am. I want to declare myself ready and out of the woods but no. This pain. This freaking pain had to raise its ugly head and remind me that I am not as strong or ready as I think I am.
You know that feeling when you are admitted to the hospital and you have finals the next day; and the doctor refuses to cooperate because your body refuses to lie to the doctor for you to be discharged to take your tests.
Yes, that feeling when you feel trapped in a hospital bed and you have so much life to get to. Your knees are hurting yet you feel certain the moment you are discharged tomorrow, you’ll be on the court dunking on some jokers! COVID or not, you are ready to break ankles and dial-up 911 on their behalf. But alas! These grand visions are interrupted by a deep throbbing pain that resets your discharge timeline and realigns your perception of progress and the real tangible measurable impression the doctor has of not merely how far you have come but how much further remains to go.
That feeling. I have its second cousin except it’s not physical pain but an emotional one. It all started while I was ranting on in a group about how strong women need to be celebrated and protected. In a display of vulnerability and leadership, I uttered the words:
“I was dumped by a strong woman!”
The rest of the conversation is mostly irrelevant because I lost the argument anyway. I managed to allow a patriarchy guardian beat me up using religious swords. Or maybe like this pain, I just have a distorted view of victory. Either way, those words presented an old truth in a new wineskin. It was almost like I had to eat the same salad I have been eating for 2 years now but with a completely new salad dressing — a really bitter one.
Technically, literally. It’s true. But why does it hurt so much to think about? I said, why the heck does it hurt so much to think about now? Why am I even thinking about it now? Why does phrasing it that way hurt so bad? Why did I phrase it that way, to begin with? Wait, this still hurts ??! I cannot figure out what I am angry about. The fact that I got dumped or the fact that I still feel anything from it.
Whatever the root, whatever is the source of this pain. Here are the facts:
- My pride refuses to accept that I was well known and rejected
- I wasn’t rejected by someone I do not care about
- The rejection of Dolapo Olisa was a thoughtful, intentional act- an informed choice.
- Dolapo Olisa after 2 years is not fit to return to normal activity reserved for healthy people.
I want to date again. I want to hug again. I want to live again. I want to not feel held down and back. I want to move totally and completely forward. I want to not have to mix two contrasting emotions in a cup — delight for her sorrow for me — when I see her happy without me. I want the lessons from inadequacy to be complete. I want to stand tall and feel whole and look back at the past without regrets. I want to close that chapter, burn pages that need to be erased and attach a big round period ”.”
Unfortunately, The laws of life bend to no man. Healing, a natural process, takes time and I must let it, well — take its natural course. I must let it be.
Here are some equally essential facts:
- I am a better man
- I have leaned into this pain and giving it to God
- He has broken me and it and is forming an amazing being.
- I am doing the work
- I have every reason to be proud of the man I am becoming
- I am lonely but even that is a blessing for I get to sit in it and not run.
This has been a painful admission but a reminder of another law of life. Authority implies that I do not set the rules. So when my mind needs a release by reliving, a penning and pining, a painful embracing, I must comply or remain stuck.
From me to you, Pain: I’ll let you be.