Experiencing pain seems to be a requisite affliction of the human condition. While I remain intrigued about the myriad causes of pain, I’m especially fascinated by our ability to respond to it in such a wide variety of ways. We have so many choices available; all of them valid and useful at times. It’s my intention to choose the one that will offer the greatest healing.
I’m quite adept at shutting down to avoid pain as well as at distracting myself from it. I’ve managed to tune out chronic low back pain for decades by reducing my ability to feel sensation in that area. I’ve numbed my heart to protect myself from further disappointment and rejection. I’ve even managed to create strong barriers that keep me separate from the anguish and hatred that exist in the world. While these strategies have indeed reduced the amount of pain I experience, they simultaneously keep me separated from the highs as well as the lows life has to offer.
Given that I yearn to experience joy and peace and love, I’ve begun to challenge the above behavior. I’ve designed a full spectrum self-care routine that provides comfort during times of need. These are healthier strategies that support overall well-being, yet still attempt to create distance between myself and pain. While it is indeed important to be gentle with myself when facing upset, this is merely a step on the journey of healing, not the destination. So connecting with a girlfriend (or 7! Yup, it was a trying week), buoying my spirits with inspiring music or books, visiting my happy place in the woods, and seeking out the world’s best taco recipe are all helpful and uplifting activities, there is another layer of work to be accomplished afterwards to fully integrate my entire being.
This is the layer where healing occurs. As difficult as it might sound, and as elaborate as our society’s rituals for avoiding this are, I’ve come to believe that it’s necessary to fully experience pain in order to heal it. Being completely present, vulnerable, and open-hearted is the path I’m choosing to take whenever I am able. This allows the energy to continue flowing and quite often the intensity of pain subsides as a result. It most definitely prevents me from burying it inside myself, only to have it emerge later on as disease or disability. And it absolutely enables me to connect fully with my humanity and become even more compassionate towards myself and others.
Having access to unlimited, spiritually guided life-force energy in the form of Reiki is indeed a huge blessing. While I continue to use Reiki to ease a headache, to soothe a wounded heart, and to optimize my experiences on a daily basis; the support it provides for me while being challenged by pain is truly invaluable. Now that I’ve chosen the difficult path of going through the pain rather than around it, I’m seeking all the support I am able to muster. And bursting with gratitude that the power of Reiki is available at my very fingertips.
If you’re interested in obtaining support on your healing journey, consider receiving Reiki treatments, or learning it yourself. While it isn’t the only means of staying present to what is true for you and allowing the energy to continue flowing (rather than denying, avoiding, or stuffing it down), in my experience it’s the most gentle and easily accessible route. Details may be found on my website if you’re interested in learning more.