Afternoon Walk – Source Of Power


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April 29, 2016

Pain, when it is constant and unrelenting, can take over thoughts, attitude, a daily concurrence of someone’s everyday life. It creeps in, slowly, without any annoucement other than its sustained, and perpetual nudges, and prods, and pokes of a weary ache that never seems to leave. Medication helps, but the uninvited guest constantly reminds the hotel of its unwelcome presence.

There are mind tricks one can employ to fend off this persnickity visitor of torment. To some extent one can ignore these jabs, stabs, and rubs of discomfort. One can ingest pain relievers, until larger doses are required and the inevitable shadow of addiction knocks on the door. One can get involved in the lives of others in a good and positive way, and/or use humor to defend the owner against the univited guest.

All of these are avenues worth taking, but realizing the risk of medication and its own possible unsatisfactory side-effect, must be guarded against at all times. What pain does, besides being hurtful, twists the mind and points it in another direction, sometimes so insiduously, the owner is not aware, until the pain has completely taken over the body and the mind.

Pain rears its head in the mind in little or seemingly insignificant ways. Like showing irritability at the slightest disagreement, or becoming grumpy with a server in a restaurant because they did not bring you water quickly enough. As the pain increases its hold, the mind becomes more angry and begins outbursts out of proportion to the irritation. One becomes angry, for no apparent reason, with people who are trying to help because they care.

Most of the time, the host of pain, because of pains insidious nature, does not recognize this change in behavior, until something so slight and without merit, becomes a mountain of turmoil. For some, it is a revelation at this point, for others, it takes more. So it is for this writer.

All week Brownie has been barking for a walk. It has been windy, rainy, and cold. This writer, who has been directed to stop taking medication because of his upcoming surgery, has become more irritable, grumpy, and thoughtless. Yesterday, it was still windy, cold and looked like rain, but the decision to take a walk overcame the tiredness and out the door we went.

By the time we reached the 300 Road, also known as General Crook’s Trail, the residence of pain in this guest had been revealed, and all the behavior of the past few days was realized. We turned around and went back to our cottage. The realization did not erase the irritation, but the knowledge of why this writer has been acting with such a bad temper became elegantly apparent.

Like pain itself, this emotional temper tantrum does not just fade away. It has taken some time to build up and also take residence in the mind. It becomes comfortable to blame others for this state of mind, as it relieves the owner of responsibility for their actions.

There we were on General Crook’s Trail, standing at a cross roads of sorts. The realization struck like a bolt. Yes, we went back to our cottage, but the ebbing away of the frustration, tired body, and general wearyness of the constant pain, does not drain out like a pail with a hole in it.

However, pain, with it’s constant and unrelenting persence, has been realized as the instigator, and like the control of pain, one can control and direct one’s own thoughts, and not fling spears and arrows at those who only want what we want: an ending of this constant pain. The resolution is to take back control of this writer’s thoughts and actions and refuse pain its current source of power.

I am grateful for your visit. Thank you.

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