In this world ~ in this life ~ everyone experiences pain of one sort or another. Whether it be physical pain or the pain that invades our emotional well-being, there is a certain amount of suffering that one experiences at times to the point of being unbearable. Recognizing that pain of whatever sort is a signal that something is wrong either with our bodies or our psyches, is something that we usually try to manage, avoid or eliminate. Some people take medications to alleviate physical pain while others use psychotropic drugs to lessen the pain that we feel in an emotional vein.
There is a factor, though, that is unavoidable which may not respond to our efforts to reduce its effects and that factor is the night time. Somehow, night time tends to exacerbate whichever pain that we are experiencing … something which does not seem as prevalent during daytime hours. Night time brings about shadows that seem threatening and overwhelming to many humans. There is a sense of foreboding that occurs once the sun no long illuminates our lives that may tend to leave us with the feeing of being bereft or feeling a sense of mourning for ourselves.
The looming darkness tends to present an emotional picture to us that we are alone and suffering without the benefit of being able to be seen by those whom we love because we don’t want to bother them with our plight. That sense of loneliness that seems to emerge from the darkness is much different from the same sense that we might experience during daylight hours. If often feels that it is never-ending … that the night will never end bringing about feelings of helplessness and despair. These feelings tend to raise our anxiety levels which, in turn, tend to increase the symptoms that are causing the pain from which we are suffering.
Some people will try to increase their medication intake to a dangerous level in their sense of desperation and fear. Others might try getting lost in a book so as to take their minds off of the feelings that plague them. Still others will turn to a TV for some comfort so that they might be able to lose themselves in the characters they view on the screen. All of these methods may help but perhaps there are some pointers that we need to consider when we find ourselves in these types of situations.
First, remember that pain is an essential part of living life but it is not permanent. When we experience pain, we might have a tendency to perceive it as “never-ending” which not only reinforces the pain but may make it worse. Keep in mind that our minds can either work for us or against us so that understanding that pain is a temporary phenomenon is important. Secondly, with the realization that pain can be a temporary experience, looking forward to the daylight hours when our lives might be filled with activities and people to whom we can relate that will enable us to forgo the onslaught of overwhelming thoughts and feelings that might occur during the night time, helps us to have something to look forward to.
Thirdly, there would be nothing wrong with awakening someone in whom we can confide and talk about the pain and all of the thoughts and feelings that accompany it. It’s very true that talking about how we think and feel helps us to overcome obstacles that tend to keep us stuck in negativity. When we share with others, there is truly a therapeutic element that we can use and depend on to help us through the night and beyond the pain … no matter what the source.
Fourthly, for those of us who are in constant pain with little respite, we need to understand that we can build a tolerance for withstanding the pain. This element would be the opposite of fighting the pain or trying to rid ourselves of it. It seems that the more we fight pain, the worse it becomes. Tolerance for pain can develop over time. It is based in our awareness and appreciation of our strengths instead of focusing on our feeling weak while reeling in the negativity that those feelings might result in.
Ultimately, is it really about night time that seems to be the culprit of our pain or is it our perception? Not allowing our feelings to overtake us while taking the time to allow our ability to reason things out to our advantage may be the best solution of all. the more that we can come to believe in ourselves and our abilities, the more control we may have over pain as well as the rest of our lives as well.
(10 July 2013)
Both as a consultant and author, Charles Bonasera’s story-telling have motivated people to change patterns and resolve problems in their lives. All of his books contain valuable, practical lessons that people can easily apply to bettering and managing their lifestyles. He has also written a myriad of articles which can be found on his website at www.charlesmbonasera.com.