Have you ever had a splinter?
Splinters are generally little. They are little in size, but big in pain.
Splinter pain is not an excruciating pain…it is not like breaking a bone or pinching a nerve or getting attacked by a lion (I’m guessing on this last one). But it is nagging, ever-present and just uncomfortable.
When you have a splinter, you are fully-functional. It will not stop you from going out on the town, eating queso dip and dancing. It will not stop you from doing your job or from climbing a mountain. You can still experience pleasure and have a splinter. These things are not mutually exclusive. You can have a splinter and in the very same moment feel incredibly wonderful and happy.
But you will notice its presence. You will know it is there; an annoying sensation that serves as a steady reminder that you really need to do something about it.
Instead, you do nothing.
It would be painful to remove it. Why put yourself through the pain when, after all, living with it is not all that bad? You can still be happy, remember?
But the longer it is left in your skin, the deeper it embeds itself there. And now it hurts. Like, really hurts. This little thing has the power to keep you up at night. You find your mind frequently wandering to its achy tenderness.
At some point, you find you just can’t take it anymore. It has to come out. You know it will require a healthy dose of courage…but it HAS to come out.
You ready your tweezers, prepare the Band-Aids and cotton swabs and pour yourself a healthy glass of something stiff. Or maybe you just make yourself a white wine spritzer with lots of ice. Come hell or high water, that splinter is coming out.
Later, as you sit back in your comfy chair admiring your bandage, you experience a new sensation: relief.
And you find yourself thinking, “Why on God’s green earth did it take me so long to remove that damn splinter?”
Have you ever had a mind-splinter?
That ever-present feeling in your gut that you need to do something. That reoccurring thought that you ignore in favor of excuses and rationalizations? That voice that you try not to hear, because listening would require real change? And probably some pain.
I have a mind-splinter.
And I am here to tell you, this mind-splinter is persistent; it does not just go away.
Believe me when I say that I have tried every tactic to make this little mind-splinter disappear. Everything, but confronting it, that is.
What I am starting to realize, is that mind-splinters are nagging for a reason. We are forced to face them head on or come to the realization that we will live our lives in a dull, but constant, state of discomfort.
I am starting to realize that I no longer have a choice; I have to do something about it. I have waited long enough.
Can you guess what my mind-splinter is?
Tune in Wednesday for Part II of The Splinter Saga