“One heals suffering only by experiencing it to the full.”
I’ve got a 100-mile race coming up in two weeks. I’m excited about running it, but I’m psyching myself up for the pain I’ll suffer over 24+ hours. It’s gonna hurt.
People tell me I’m crazy for running these races; for inviting such discomfort into my life. But like the Proust quote above, I really do believe that pain teaches us things we can’t learn anywhere else. Important things, like, how it feels to go hypothermic, and to have the blisters on your feet sliced open with a razor blade and then sealed glued back together with Krazy Glue.
I know that sounds unpleasant, but for some reason, I can’t wait! I’m a glutton for punishment. But aren’t we all? Aren’t we all running our own 100 mile races?
If you’re a parent, you know what I mean. Parenthood is endless worry and diaper-changing and housecleaning and chauffeuring and heartbreak and sleep deprivation, but whoa! – those moments of beauty… And the stuff you learn!
Kids are running 100 mile races too. School, for instance, starts in a week. That’s a 100 mile race. And whether you’re passionate about gymnastics, or want to play for the NHL, or want to become a rock star, or write novels, or climb mountains, or write computer code, all those things take a huge amount of work and commitment. All those things are like 100 mile races.
Life is a hundred mile race! It can be painful but…it’s full of learning and beauty and people who love us and who are hopefully standing by with a cup of hot chocolate and a tube of Krazy Glue.