The other day I was getting a painful procedure done and the doctor was amazed at my pain tolerance. He told me I was a "world record holder for pain endurance" He said "I guess after everything you've been through this is not that bad?" And I said, "Yes, totally, but also the way I get through everything is by reminding myself I can do anything for a minute."
It's true- I can do anything for a minute. It's something I discovered in a body sculpting exercise class- when the instructor had us do approximately a thousand weighted squats. I was like nope. And the teacher was like "come on Dena, you can do anything for a minute." And so I did it, and my fortitude was born.
There's a story I used to tell (back in my teen educator days) about a magic ring that would make the happiest man cry and the saddest man dry his tears. The ring wasn't magic - just engraved with the words "this too shall pass."
Such a simple concept but so true - when you are sad, struggling, hurting, scared, bald, fragile, doing lunges- it's not going to be like that forever.
If you can do anything for a minute, then why not as many minutes as it takes till it's over. This too shall pass. So I just breathe through that minute to the next one, and the next one, until I come out on the other side. I wouldn't say it's easy, but it works.
But the flip side of this coin is that when I am happy, and I'm happy a lot, I need to stop- acknowledge it, appreciate it, revel in it- because the way life works some other curveball is bound to come my way and make me work towards that happiness again.
Then again mama always said nothing worth having comes easy.
The most high maintenance girl in the world (who has lots of hair now)