If I lived in a world with less pain, we would all see more people making a difference, using their gifts and talents more openly, pursuing their passions more avidly, and being even more active in their lives, families, communities, countries, and on the world scene. Those people are currently somewhat hidden. We cannot always do what we want to do, need to do, and are called to do, because we are hindered by an invisible enemy. Our pain cannot always be seen on scans or X-rays; it certainly cannot be seen by the naked eye. However, the effects of our pain are keenly felt in our lives, our families, our societies. How is this pain felt? In the missing pieces of artwork because the arms and hands hurt too badly to form them. In the missing pieces of legislation because the bodies who were intended to write them are in bed, not elected to office. In the missing teachers, because those bodies are racked with pain and can no longer teach. In the missing police officers, business owners, athletes, musicians, etc., who cannot do what they were supposed to do and are now doing something different, not lesser nor worse, just different.
Even when some of us are able to pursue the passions to which we are called, we are unable to do as much as we would love to do. It is not because we are lazy. It is not because we are rebellious or pouting or insubordinate. Our bodies do not cooperate the way we wish they did. The pain holds us back. The severity varies from day to day, hour to hour. We have to cancel appointments, change plans, postpone gatherings, and flat out miss out on many of life's offerings because of pain. Some of our friends disappear. Some of our family members stay away. Some who are close to us think we are making excuses. We are not. It is something we cannot change or we would. If we were making it up, we would stop making it up so we could have our lives back. In a world with less pain, we would not have to make all these concessions for ourselves.
If we all lived in a world with less pain, money that is spent on surgeries, procedures, medications, treatments, alternative care, and therapies could be spent instead on other causes and important things. We could travel, visit our ailing, aging relatives or newborn grandchildren or stay with someone who had just had surgery. We could adopt a child or a pet. We could afford to help our children pay for college. We could buy art supplies and actually create beautiful, inspiring pieces. We could support candidates or even afford to run for office ourselves. We could live in more substantial housing than many of us find ourselves in. We could continue to pay our mortgages and not be forced to sell our homes to afford our care for our painful conditions.
Pain robs our bodies and the citizens of our world of many tangible and intangible assets. It robs friendships because friends don't or won't understand. It robs marriages because partners don't know what to do and give up. It robs bank accounts because we have so many physical needs. It robs our society of the gifts its pain-riddled citizens just cannot give. The misery endured by those of us in pain is unbelievable. It is not a mere toothache that is treated in a few days by your dentist. It is not the pain after surgery which is indicating healing. No, it is constant, chronic, unrelenting, merciless, interfering, obstructive, and uncaring. In a world with less pain, there would be less misery, less irritability, and grouchiness. I wish pain were less and very temporary. I'm not so naive to think a world could exist without pain altogether. However, if it were only assured to be tolerable and short-lived, we could have more hope again. We could make plans and keep them. We could pursue lives and not drop out. We could work at our chosen professions and not have to quit or go part time because of pain.
In a world with less pain, these problems would not exist and people who were born to do incredible things would not have to settle for less than that.
"If I Lived in a World with Less Pain, I Could..."
Campaign - submitted by Lynn E. Mora 9/2011
Taken from the APF - American Pain Foundations Facebook page