On Pain

Sorry, for the seemingly ranting nature of this post, but I appear to become more self reflective in my old age. I was simply watching television and listening to some random music and began to ponder on the nature of pain. On a evolutionary, biological level, I understand what purpose pain serves. I get why we still need to experience it. However, mental and emotional pain, I find confusing and interesting. I suppose that is why I wrote this particular post. This song in particular partially inspired this rant:

I hate needles. I don’t know why but I abhor the sensation of the metal penetrating my skin, but I kind of love the relief after it occurs or of when it is removed. Again, no idea why and that might make me a bit messed up but in the spectrum of weird, stupid shit about me to be concerned over…that one is like way below on the list. Frankly, physical injuries and pain do not really concern me.

Don’t get me wrong. I definitely do not want to break my arm or have a nail driven into my foot or anything tomorrow, but assuming I am not killed I believe I can overcome whatever physical pain occurs. For some reason, however, emotional injuries or the possibility of psychological damage and pain scares the ever living shit out of me.

Seriously, there was a point in my life where I can distinctly recall choosing to become more closed off, introverted, and just shrink into myself emotionally/psychologically/etc. There wasn’t a specific reason for this. I am not a product of a broken home, or the patriarchy, or feminism, or post-modernism, or any other bullshit over arching ideology/philosophy that people use to try to explain everything but ultimately fails any rigorous testing or analysis. I just came to a point of dealing with people and opinions and relationships and made a choice to have a line of clear demarcation.

Basically, like a lot of people, I put up walls around aspects of my life and personality because I learned that making close relationships and allowing those deep connections can cause pain, hurt, and rejection. When you scrape a knee or even break a bone, the pain subsides and you have at least an idea of when it will end and you can move one. Unfortunately, mental and psychological pain has no clear end and can, and will, come up randomly at awkward times throughout your life. (Just me? Okay then.)

At this point, anyone who is still reading this might advise me to speak to professionals about this insecurities/thoughts or even just a few close friends to talk with. First off, thanks for the advice, random internet stranger, and thank you for visiting and reading this humble site. Second, I know the effects this type of mentality and personality has on a life. I have gone through those consequences for most of my life, and, frankly, I am okay with that.

Has it meant that certain relationships did not work out? Of course. Or that some events and possibilities never came to fruition? Duh. But, again, those were my choices and in the grand scale of all, my life is pretty good. I have a select few friends who I care about. Some of them know me very well. Some don’t. Most still don’t know everything about me and never will. I can live with that.

Even with my closed off nature, I still experienced the emotional roller-coasters of friendships, relationships, rejection, etc. The difference was simply that those emotions (whether good or bad) never went beyond a certain level. With romantic interests, even with the one who got the closest, I knew where the line was and how much I could love them. With friends, I chose to get close only to a few people and even with them the most honest conversations always involved alcohol. There were still imposed limits of how much I was willing to divulge or discuss. In fact, with few exceptions, I was rarely the one leading conversations.

As with most posts, I don’t have any actual answers about pain, choice, or either’s purpose. For all I know, I might actually just be an emotionally stunted dumb ass, but it was my choice to be so. I suppose that will have to be enough to get me to the next point. And beyond.

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