Tuesday, March 2, 2010


"Yes I’d rather hurt than feel nothing at all" Lady Antebellum from the song, "Need You Now"

One of my friends mentioned in his blog that he had heard this song and questioned this line. Would you rather hurt than feel nothing at all? This really got me to thinking and I've been mulling it over since I read it.

I've decided that if the alternative is either to hurt or feel nothing then I'd rather hurt. To feel nothing would just be awful. To not feel joy, excitement, anticipation and even pain would not be living. The pain makes us enjoy the happy that much more. Without pain how do you know joy? To not feel pain would almost be as bad as not feeling at all.  Of course, pain is no fun, pain hurts, pain exhausts, but it is pain that makes us appreciate and recognize happiness that much more. 

"We must embrace pain and burn it as fuel for our journey" -Kenji Miyazawa

Don Ranney states in "Anatomy of Pain" that "...pain is a perception, not really a sensation, in the same way that vision and hearing are. It involves sensitivity to chemical changes in the tissues and then interpretation that such changes are harmful. This perception is real, whether or not harm has occurred or is occurring. Cognition is involved in the formulation of this perception. There are emotional consequences, and behavioral responses to the cognitive and emotional aspects of pain."

Pain is as necessary to life as breathing. We must feel pain. Physical pain alerts us there is something wrong. Emotional pain, in much the same way, also alerts us there is something wrong. The sooner we learn to pay attention to emotional pain the sooner we are able to heal. It is easier to ignore, or bury emotional pain, until it festers and eventually explodes, leading to, at times, physical pain. 

 As I've grown older I've learned the importance of truly "feeling" emotional pain and not burying it. It is better to work through it, find out the cause, and then find a solution. I'm not sure I'd want to even be around someone that had not endured  emotional pain. It is a part of maturing, of growing up. It is how you learn to appreciate the good, the happy, the joyful, otherwise you just don't understand that you must hold onto the amazing when you find it.

So, yes, I would much, much rather hurt than feel nothing at all. Especially if it is followed by joy.


Doc said...

I'm still not sure.

Anonymous said...

Feeling pain is on the spectrum of feeling alive. So yes, pain is "good." And it does make you appreciate the good things so much more, it also forces you to reach for things to be grateful for. Also, I'd say when you move fully through it and reach a level of peace or joy it's similar to childbirth/labor in that you know it was bad, but can't remember exactly how bad...

Mandy said...


Leslee-Thanks for stopping by my blog. You're exactly right with the childbirth analogy. Excellent point and one I agree with completely. I found, as nervous as I was, I looked forward to labor each time as I knew what am amazing reward awaited me. There is nothing more empowering than working through such intense pain to find such pure, raw joy on the other side.

Anonymous said...

Nope, I'd rather not feel pain. It's just too hard. Especially when it comes after happiness... that just makes it worse.

Four Dinners said...



If you feel nothing at all you are either in a deep coma...not good...or emotionally dead...also not good.

Whilst we don't particularly like pain regardless of our pain threshold if it's physical, at least we know we're alive.

Alive has to be better than the alternative and alive without feeling alive is a living death.

That's what I think anyroad.

...and don't hurt me!...;-)

Evil Twin's Wife said...

I agree with you, feel something. Because even if your heart hurts for a moment or a week or a month, you'll eventually come out the other side feeling better.

Mandy said...

3-But, to know true joy, you have to know pain, at least that's how I see it.

4Dinners: You said it, love!

ETW: My point exacty!