No Joy in Pain


Some people tell me, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” Other will say that the end justifies the means, and it will all work out in the end. The preacher tells me, “Count it all joy when you suffer.” “God is testing you!”

I am not a fan of any of the above. I have been through back surgery for two ruptured discs. I did find healing and renewed physical strength for which I am grateful. On the other hand, I went through several years of depression that let me scarred with wounds that will never heal. Being told to cheer up or it will get better was no help.

No one, it seems, has a quick fix for pain. The best help for someone who is suffering is to be there for them, in a physical sense. Skip the helpful comments, the old clichés, and religious promises, and just be present with them. Listen and feel their pain with them. In due time things may or may not work out, but what I remember most is who cared enough to be there for me.

No joy in deep pain

Words and promises fall short

Be present with me


Today at d’Verse, Ingrid asked us to dig deep and share a time in our life when we experienced pain. We are to write a poem that expresses how pain affected us as we went through it and hopefully came out on the other side.

Join us at:

Painting: Dwight L. Roth

92 thoughts on “No Joy in Pain

  1. This is so true. Support is the biggest step to healing. No judgment, no instructions. Maybe a nudge this way or that if the other really is lost. But being a friend is the most important thing. I’d like to save your painting for a future blog. May I?

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  2. I’m pleased you made it out the other side, Dwight. Emotional pain may be invisible, but it can leave deep scars. And people telling us to pull our socks up and get on with it is not helpful at all! I battled with depression from my teens right up to a few years back. It’s a much brighter perspective once you come through.

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  3. Such a touching haiku! How true it is- sometimes just to be there next to someone and to be heard is the most you can ask for. People these days who have “no time” for anything other than to say “cheer up, we all go through this phase” do not understand enough. No joy in pain indeed. Thanks for this post!

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  4. I empathise fully Dwight, Many years ago, I had months off work with the same injury. In the end I avoided the back surgery and all is well these days. It was my patient and loving family that got me through. They knew exactly how to be “present with me”. Very well articulated.

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  5. Wow! Thank you so much for sharing! I heard you in full on this. I am only 43 yo and have 5 ruptured discs in my cervical and thoracic spine, but because of early onset osteoporosis there isn’t a damn thing anyone can do for me. I’ve been “dealing” with it over 7 years. I wrote a poem recently about it, called This Pain. The depression spiral is real, dark and deep, as I’ve spent most of those years alone, because who the hell wants to be around someone in so much pain that has all but given up? And words are nothing but words, actions are what count. I am very happy you have people in your life proving without words your need and worth, you deserve it! 🖤~Kris

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    • Thank you, Kris, for sharing this heartfelt comment! I can’t imagine the pain you must be going through. Finding friends who really care is very difficult. I am so sorry for your pain and hope you can somehow find relief.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you so much Dwight. I recently moved across the country to be closer to family, and I have a couple of great friends that are there to always listen. So it has gotten better. Plus I have a great team of doctors now that have sparked a little hope in my world, so fingers crossed and a lot of work on my part and I’ll be on the mend. Your honesty in your post was a bright light for me in not giving up, so again, thank you from the bottom of my heart. 🖤~Kris

        Liked by 1 person

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