The Pain Games.

Via Tracy Crossley
on Jul 19, 2012
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Photo: Irving Klaw

Many of us are drawn to pain and suffering.

Pain was what I looked forward to when things were going well in my life. Where could I find pain to show me I was unworthy of the goodness in my life?

All my wishing, hoping and praying for happiness has resulted in changes, but mostly it’s resulted in the understanding that my fairy godmother wasn’t gonna gently tap me with her wand. She instead hit me upside the head to wake me up!

The wake up call wasn’t immediate for me; I’ve been unraveling myself for years. Understanding the often stated words to accept everything as is and not “want” more, but first, I had to stop wanting the pain game.

Understanding the “why” of what we do emotionally allows us to change direction.

We attract others to ourselves who suffer just like us, especially in intimate relationships.

If you’re like me, you need a person in your life to remind you that you deserve to suffer. They don’t give you what you need or want and you think, “I should just work harder to prove my worth and then they’ll give me what I want!” Instead you work yourself into a frenzy to be better or die trying and nothing changes.

This usually comes in the form of a personal relationship, both people undeserving of real happiness, except they usually don’t know it because the pattern started in childhood.

When things get to feel too good with this partner, it’s a guarantee that one person will sabotage it and watch it crumble to sh*t in some form.

Wanting someone who can’t give or get past their own pain and wanting them to do so, is a monumental task. I know because of what it took for me to get a handle on myself. Most of us are unaware of how walls are pain, self-protection is pain and living in the past is pain. Projection of all of this onto your relationship is the pain game.

Some get lucky and find someone actively working on getting their pain in order, so it is a collaborative effort, one to grow together and cheer each other on. But, more often we bring someone in who is our worst fear, showing us what we believe is wrong with us is true.

A mirror of pain, I have broken the mirror into tiny pieces, now the pain is not fully reflected back to me only moments and it makes me understand; I am the only one in control of me.

Photo: Cgs

I could never savor when good things came, they were temporary…it was the bad I waited for in my life.

Unlovable and a failure, I had an old voice telling me I must suffer. It struggled against the now much stronger voice of  “Life can be good and fun.” To really live in that place is a foreign country I am slowly getting used to calling home.

I have to power through the urges to fall back into that comfort zone of pain and suffering.

When I’m having fun and focused on awesomeness, that small voice (which used to be a scream) grows—it pulls me backwards to the past or to a person who mistreats me or withholds love. I must be strong emotionally and stand for myself. Building the confidence that I deserve good.

It’s hard, one of the scariest and amazing journeys ever.

It’s how we finally grow up.

We don’t have to seek suffering in the dark corners, looking for the flicker of recognition of the child who was unworthy, bad and needing punishment. It’s to learn to stay in the sunshine, opening our lives to not be afraid and the more we do it “on purpose” the happier we feel.

The wish is for a partner to hold our hand, as many of us have been willing to do for the pain of another. Holding their hand we thought if we could just be there enough for them, then we’d be rewarded with love or that invisible entity saying we were finally good enough; we’d have served our time and happiness was ours.

Except it doesn’t work that way.

The first step:

  • >> Not act against ourselves and if we do, to then be kind to ourselves.

The second step:

>> The pull is strong to submerge oneself in the comfort of pain, swimming alone for days, thinking, we are healing, instead it is indulging fear. We run from happiness into the arms of the familiar; fear.

>> Wallowing keep us stuck longer; find the courage because awareness is something we can either ignore or change it by taking opposite action. And that is scary sh*t! It can be like cutting off an arm, because the pull may be every cell of the body, but really it’s just cutting off the oxygen supply to fear.

The third step:

>> Recognize pain and suffering are self-absorbing; it keep us stuck. Get over yourself. See where the pain is inside. Asking ourselves “Why?” Is this helping me? Then get ready to move a cement pool, because the strength to move from the pool of drowning in shit to a greater sea of opportunity is the truest meaning of courage. The heart wins and the mind learns.

The fourth step:

>> We don’t need to battle ourselves. Put down the weapons. Get in the flow; see the pain don’t indulge it. Just know things don’t have to be this way and talk about it. Talk it to death. Fear is there, but when you talk about it, it no longer runs the show.

The beauty of these steps is that if you can do them with your partner in pain; you can find a whole new level of intimacy and connection.

We all arrive at the destination in different vehicles. I don’t want a new car; mine is just fine. I want to live the shit out of this life with a bumper sticker saying, “hang loose.” When the darkness comes I let it, yet I awaken from that slumber of pain into the dawn of unlimited opportunity!


Editor: Brianna Bemel

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About Tracy Crossley

Tracy Crossley is a hyphenate: female, writer, curiosity quencher, artist, poet, gardener of real gardens and existential ones, clairvoyant, and momma to grown ups. She owns Intuitive Reinvention Inc. She is currently speaking, writing and mentoring people on getting out of their heads and dysfunctional relationships and into living an authentic, anxiety-free, happy and loving existence. If you want to learn more about her and how she can help you, check out a complimentary discovery session with her click to learn and schedule., Or find her on social media, facebook page, blog and on twitter, she always follows back. She also has a free weekly podcast show on many topics she writes about here click here to listen.


14 Responses to “The Pain Games.”

  1. […] years ago, I went through a bad break-up. I don’t know if there’s a universally agreed upon scale-of-pain for these types of things, but this one had to be up there at a eight or […]

  2. Wandering Dervish says:

    Words of truth!!

  3. Xerxes says:

    Good stuff!

  4. jill says:

    Well said-the courage to speak and act

  5. Tracy says:

    Thank you! I used to think pain was a great dinner companion, now its only an occasional lunch guest. : )

  6. Tracy says:

    Thank you! I am glad you liked it! : )

  7. Tracy says:

    Thanks so much! Yes, courage is truly a different definition than I used to give it years ago. : )

  8. Orly says:

    I believe that what comes in, must go out. No bandaids. How do you do it? First, recognize that the biggest fear, is to face the fear and when you face the fear, it's not that great any more. Learn to go to that place, touch it, feel it, cry it out and use small steps. Give your self permission to go there and finally to forgive your self. Ohh yes, one more thing, remember- you are not alone, we all have a story to tell :))))

  9. Tracy says:

    Hi Orly!

    No bandaids, indeed! It is all about the awareness and sticking with it through the roller coaster that is fear. I read something once about inviting fear to sit next to you on a park bench. Make friends with it, because its always there, but don't let it lead. I like your analogy of facing fear–it is to submerge in it. : ) I love hearing the stories of others too, because its that common bond we all share in being human and you are right we are not alone. Thank you!!!

  10. Orly says:

    You see , I believe that life is simple, we make it complicated. I teach my students to be a technician to their computer with a soul( the body). To learn to be friends with your inner you and with your breath, create freedom within, as you eliminate toxins with the exhalation. This is just a quick idea of what I teach. It works like magic !! So liberating :)))

  11. Tracy says:

    Hi Orly!

    Life is simple…and easy. YES!! We do complicate it, YES!! I agree with you and I love that your work is helping your students to be friends or a technician for their inner selves. Freedom and liberation are what it is all about and we always have the key, we just have to open the door. : ))
    Thank you for sharing with me.

  12. Stupid righwingers don’t know to disable rating on their vid. If you visit it at YouTube it currently has:

  13. […] long time ago in a land far, far away, I used to exist on the sidelines or in my “living coffin” for […]

  14. […] hell. You begin the search for proof that the serpent is lying, that the whisper isn’t real regardless of how real it once was. Yes, you know that you are dreaming but the dream seems more real than the reality you see. Truth […]