In fact a lot of pain is good. Some days I wish I could blog during my workouts. That is when I have great clarity in my mind and thought process. That also would be a little counterproductive…leaving the workout every time I feel inspiration. My workouts would never get done or they would take me 4-5 hours.
A while back I stepped on a wasp…not something I would ever recommend unless you like pain, sausage toes, redness, decreased mobility and everything else that goes into a sting of that nature. My foot healed after a few weeks and I was back to working out and hitting the karate mat full throttle. Unfortunately I am thinking the venom from the wasp sting had a lasting negative effect on the tendons in my ankle. Pointing is quite painful at times. This is not a good thing when delivering a power roundhouse to the bag is one of my most favorite things. I decided to let it heal for the prescribed 4-6 weeks.
After 4-6 weeks it was still very painful and I was ‘dancing’ around the pain, because after all I didn’t want to make anything worse. I didn’t want to make anything better either by doing that. Last week we started at our new studio. I really wasn’t interested in looking weak to my new teachers (I have a little competitive edge inside). I just opened up a can of power roundhouse on the bag. Thank goodness we give off a loud yell when we punch and kick the bags, because it enable me to scream in pain, but not get noticed. It was interesting….after that one painful moment, my ankle has felt more normal than it has in 6 months. Hmmm… maybe I needed a little more pain in order to get rid of that pain.That led to some pondering about pain.
When is the best time to ponder pain? When you are smack dab in the middle of it. Now it is not healthy to look at it through a negative lens…which is very easy when you are in a lot of discomfort. It takes a lot of strength and will power to step back and find lessons in painful situations. As I have been doing our new ever intensified karate workouts and my normal Insanity/P90X2 workouts I have been looking for the power pain has. I have determined that pain has power to help you stop doing what is injuring you so that you can heal and become stronger.
When we get injured and rip something, the pain is a warning system to stop and heal. It shows us that we pushed too hard, did something we were not supposed to, were injured by someone else or we made a choice that wasn’t correct. In those moments, the pain can save us from further harm and teach us a lesson. If we ignore the pain and continue to do what is injuring us, then the damage is greater and it takes longer to heal. When we come back, there is that level of uncertainty and we are ‘playing hurt’, which creates more situations for injury. It is difficult to regain that confidence.
It is amazing to me that things of this nature that only seem to have physical implications actually are very spiritual in nature. As I have thought about the times when I have had a lot of spiritual pain, they have been the times when I have done something I knew I wasn’t supposed to do, gone against the training that I have had, allowed someone to hurt me, pushed against my Heavenly Father or just flat out made a huge mistake. When I have ignored the pain that my spirit is allowing me to feel, I have created times in my life when the healing takes longer and allowed for uncertainty to weasel its way into my heart. Not a good healing environment.
I am so grateful for a body that can do what it does. A body that can move, run, jump, kick, punch, do cartwheels, play, and most importantly teach me. Pain has taught me physically and spiritually. I have learned that in order for me to avoid injury I need to do what I know to be right, true and correct. I understand that learning is a great playing field for mistakes to be made and lessons to be learned. I think that pain from trying something that is new and good and falling is a teacher in what not to do, but to get up and try it again. I find that when I hurt myself I need to provide the best healing environment. For my body it is rest, ice, stem, stretch, strengthen. For my spirit it is prayer, faith in the Atonement of Jesus Christ, study, testimony and service.
We have been given the best systems to heal. Our spirits and bodies are incredibly designed to inform us when something is wrong and also to heal when we allow them to do so. They are so intertwined that one cannot overcome pain without the other. What an amazing gift!!!
How have you noticed the effects of pain and healing in your life?