Friday, November 15, 2019

Pain Is Remembered More Easily Than Joy.

"I can't remember making my mom happy. Not once… So sad."

Not long ago, Mrs. M, who lost her mother, with a trembling voice crying like a baby, uttered these words. Her sadness was so deep that the religious sister writing in her weekly Catholic Times' column remarks how she couldn't help but be deeply moved by the sadness of the woman and it brought to mind that she also could not remember incidents in her life where she brought joy to her mother.

The sister grabbed the woman by the hand and they cried together. At the same time, trying to think of a moment of happiness that she gave her mother. "There were such moments."

When the sister's mother received a lung diagnosis she had the same feeling as Mrs.M.  "Ah, there's nothing I did for my mother. What should I do?"   She was in a hurry to get home for a month's vacation.  Looking back, all she remembered was the feeling of guilt in failure to please her mother.

She urged her mother to go out in the sun even though she was sick and hard to move. To help in her recovery, she forced her mother to eat the food she didn't like. Hearing her cough during the  night she would go to her room and embrace her and say: "How difficult it is?" She restrained herself from crying before her mother not wanting to add to the suffering. Thinking of her mother there was no time to think of the gratitude she had for being with her mother during those last days. In retrospect, she did recall the feelings of gratitude.

Why do we keep bringing up bad memories? Do we have more painful memories?  Is it not that we expect happiness to be enormously magnificent, and consequently coop up all the joys of life deep in our imagination? In addition, the pain that hurts us, big or small, strong or weak are bugaboos that seem to cover over all the joys we have. Is that not the reason pain is remembered more than happiness?

Sometimes the memory of pain hurts more than the pain itself. The memory of the suffering of the past prevents us from enjoying the joys of the present. Sometimes seeing the small dark clouds in the sky we worry about the future and forget the shining sun in the present sky. Even under the bright sunshine, the memory of the dark clouds of the past prevents us from basking in today's sun. If we deny the present, our fears will increase and multiply the pain.

Even if there's an enormous amount of happiness, "Isn't this a dream? Can this be happening to me…" Bewildered one can miss the very moment of joy. In our daily lives, everything seems to be routine and no different from the day before: 'that's life' and we don't notice the small moments of joy.

Every day should be filled with joy—writing, meeting people, eating, talking. All of this should be moments of joy. Isn't this the daily life of most? All want to enjoy life, we need to carefully give ourselves to what we are doing as completely as possible and with thanks in our hearts.

The end of the past is the present. We greet the present with memories of the past. So what I remember and live tells me what I will do today. The memory of the past will be helping to make my present and the future.

God has allowed me to come to this moment in time and I am thankful and also tonight, even tomorrow morning. Of course, at some point, this will not be the case the chances are good that we will fall and be hurt. It will hurt a lot. It is then that we return to the past and remember the moments of joy in life and ask for the strength to endure the pain of the present.

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