A luckily painful childhood

My daughter is recently learning about pain. At 16 months old, she’s more mobile than ever. Her adventurous climbing and clamoring on-top-of, in-between or from-one-to-another is an all day activity. Sometimes a mistake or misstep causes a big crash.

Just this morning while in my half-asleep care, she fell hard. Lots of crying, some hysterical and big red drops of blood from her mouth, meant that she’d bit her tongue. A few moments in Mom’s arms and things improved quickly. She is quite resilient and was soon laughing and eating breakfast.

I said initially here, that she is learning ABOUT pain. Most of the time JoJo is rambunctious and everything goes okay. It’s all giggles and smiles. There are moments though of quick shock and surprise when the table corner catches her noggin, or the footy-jammies slip out from under her on the slick wood floor.

Pain hurts and she’s finding that out.

At her age, she quickly rebounds and goes back to her play. She will probably crash again and again and again…

That is unless at some point she begins to learn FROM the pain. The stings and ouchies she’s experiencing can be very useful if they help direct and guide her away from activities that cause them. The pain is a great tool that can educate our kid to either get better at balance and body-control or quit trying to climb from chair to end-table to couch and up the back of the couch and front flip off of the couch.

I wonder about my own world. Sometimes I think that I have noticed the reality of certain pains, and kinda stopped at that point. Just learning ABOUT pain, is only half of the lesson. Of course I’m not just talking about physical pain, but emotional pain, spiritual pain, monetary pain, social pain and others. Sometimes when I make mistakes in these areas, I shut down at the awareness of their existence. Rehashing and discussing these pains may be my primary focus.

When JoJo is in the throes of that harsh discomfort, we try to distract her and move on to another acitivity. We grab a toy or book that she really likes to get her mind going in a new direction. We do comfort her, but only for so long. We want her to bounce back to her happy self, and not dwell too long on this passing sensation.

Honestly, I don’t do the same with myself. I find that my mind in pain, wants to search my memory banks for more instances of the same type of problem. I can look into the future and forsee more of these moments that haven’t happened yet. I can try to convince myself that the agony will never end and I might as well learn to live like this forever!

Well… hopefully, I can remind myself of this story sometime and begin to not only learn ABOUT pains in life, but learn FROM them. Maybe I can ask myself to take new steps to improve my abilities or avoid certain situations in the future. It’s possible that I could, at 37 years old, take lessons from my 16 month old, on how to grow and mature enjoying life more, even though pain exists as part of this world.

Until next week my friends, don’t be afraid to crash and burn, you just might learn something from it.

Take care, and God Bless.


Aaron Nichols

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