Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Learning There Is Only So Much You Can Do

Its easy to want to be superman or superwoman.  Its easy to want to be able to help or solve the problems of the day.  Yet, all too often, there is only so much you can do.  Learning this is not always easy and often takes repeat lessons to fully grasp.

I see people write flowery thoughts to others in times of great difficulty and while I'm sure they mean well, the words become foundations of sand.  The minute the water levels rise, the foundations wash away.  I do understand that its not always easy to know what to say and when to say anything.  I get that.  What I don't quite understand is how empty the words can often be to someone struggling to go one more day.

When I've been through the pain and rough moments of life, I often cherished those that would just sit there with me and listen.  They would listen to my stories as I told them through the tears and pain I felt.  They didn't try to tell me to get over it or move on or that some entity would make everything better.  They just listened and they listened with an open ear, having no judgement or preconceived ideas of what should or should not happen.

When rough moments happen, there is going to be a time of pain.  Yes, it will often connect with those of us who are close to the person struggling.  It often touches moments of our own pain we have had to deal with in life.  The thing we need to try and do is not let our pain become their pain.  The person going through the rough moments already has enough to deal with and is often struggling to hold on.

I often feel helpless and so wish I could take the pain away from someone else, but I also know that it may be something that enables them to go to further heights in the future.  If I think I can take away the pain, I may very likely be doing them a disservice.  We don't have the power to prevent others from feeling pain and we surely don't have the power to take the pains of life away from them.  It is part of the human experience.

As I type these words, I remember a saying that was given to me over and over.  This too shall pass.  This too shall pass.  Even though the days may be difficult and the storms are howling, it will pass.  It will lessen at some point.  Yes, you may feel the pain for a long time, but with each day that goes by, you get just a little bit stronger.

There is only so much you can do and it is as much a part of life as the pain that people experience.  Trying to play a role much bigger than we are capable only leads us into hopelessness and increases the pain levels we experience.  Let us be there for others by realizing there is only so much you can do.

It is a wonderful thing to have a heart that feels and weeps for others, but be there in strength and be there listening in love.  For through pure and unadulterated love, we can help give strength and comfort to those that need it.

Blog Post And Images (c) 2/22/15 by Don Shetterly

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