I have to share this brilliant passage. Emphasis mine:
I struggle with my struggles. Knowing someone out there has way worse problems than me... but, pain is pain. Heartache is heartache... Our crosses to bare are unique, some heavy, some light — but each is ours to carry. So you can’t compare it… at the end of the day we all feel sorrow the same… with aching, heavy hearts. Often I wonder if it’s not the pain that is so throbbing as it is the realization that our lives don’t look like we thought they were going to… whether that be battling infertility at 33, still being single at 35, or pregnant and your boyfriend skipped town at 20. I think the rawest layer of our pain comes from the fact that all the other layers of our dreams and hopes that we have held onto have been removed, so our nerve endings are exposed to all of life — we feel it all — the stares, the comments, the what if this despondency never heals kind of ponderings that plague our minds. But, what I am learning is this… it’s okay to feel the hurt. It’s what actually makes the wound heal. The layers grow back with time. Your weakness is your strength if you allow it to be. The dead ends in life that knock the air out of every fiber in your being are actually sharp curves, often multiple sharp curves that bring us to higher ground. I dare say if you haven’t felt pain or disappointment you haven’t fully lived yet. Because when disappointment grows legs and walks into our lives, it much like a caterpillar — ugly, awkward, sluggish but with time it vicissitudes and turns into this butterfly … flying with wings of compassion and empathy. You just have to be willing to go through the chrysalis process. And it’s awkward and messy. There’s no way around it.
- Lindsay at Life Lived Fully