Alessia Cara - Scars To Your Beautiful
Beauty Is Hope in a Life of Chronic Pain
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I understand your first reaction to this title, I know. Words can’t heal a heart, cure a disease or take away a pain, but they can soothe, comfort and bring hope to an aching life. Like the right words spoken or read at the right time, beauty can also accomplish more than we often suspect.
If you’re inpain today as you read this, you are probably looking for hope. I also live with pain and like you, am a victim, a patient and yet, I continue to look for hope. It’s a shame we can’t store hope, put it in the bank, and hide it under the mattress or save it for a rainy day. It often rains on those of us who live this way. Each and every day when we awake we have to grab the umbrella of hope and beauty is the source of hope; beauty is the mechanism that opens that umbrella. I live in Oregon therefore I know a great deal about rain. Often, when we’ve had a gray onslaught of showers or storms, for days on end, we hunker down with the hope the sun will come out tomorrow. I know. I’m not Ophan Annie but the song does apply. I know it’s corny but it is also a sweet song which has often been overlooked because it’s been over used. Oh come on. You know I love corny, therefore, let’s sing.
The sun’ll come out tomorrow
Bet your bottom dollar
There’ll be sun.
Just thinkin’ about tomorrow
Clears away the cobwebs
And the sorrow
Til’ there’s none!
When I’m stuck with a day
That’s gray and lonely,
I just stick out my chin and grin
And say, Oh!
The sun’ll come out tomorrow
So ya gotta hang on til’ tomorrow
Come what may Tomorrow! Tomorrow!
I love ya tomorrow!
You’re always a day a way!
Now, all together, let’s sing.
Don’t you feel better, at least a little better?
One last word about hope to quote the wise words of Martin Luther: “All which happens through the whole world happens through hope. No husbandman would sow a grain of corn if he did not hope it would spring up and bring forth the ear; how much more we are helped on by hope in the eternal.”
How does one explain the audacity of beauty? It just is. We know it when we see it and we feel its effect upon us. We do know it is purity, simplicity and life at its best. There are no rules as to where it will be found as we all observe from day to day; we see it in the eyes of a child, in the countenance of one we love who loves us and in the wag of a dog’s tale. Beauty, when we find it, goes straight for the heart. Those of us who live in the dark world of chronic pain suffer in the heart as much as or more so than the body. One cannot separate the two. The secret to allowing beauty to help us is to open our eyes, our lives and our hearts. Only a fool sits in a room with the shades drawn and complains of the weather. The truly blind are those who won’t take off their dark glasses yet complain of the clouds. If you and I focus only on our sorrow, our loss and our misery, it leaves little room for beauty, hope or a song. Hope that lives and is fed in the heart and spirit can out wrestle any physical pain ever invented. It aides us to rise above and gives us wings.
I urge you my friends to see life in a different way. If you never take the cover off a book, you never feel the fine binding. If you don’t smell and touch the soft petals of a flower you don’t absorb its true essence. If the words you speak are only and always to complain, how drab life becomes. If you only complain about the traffic outside your door, you never see the deer along the side of the road, the small child chasing a dog with a stick or the beauty of a single drop of rain as it falls during a blast of sun. With the sun upon them, they look like tiny floating parachutes of dried dandelions.
Don’t you find it fascinating that a tiny bulb of daffodils knows when it is time to pop out of the ground and is totally unaffected by either a downpour of rain or a melting sun. It just is. It stands proud, tall and delights in showing off for the world.
Beauty can be enjoyedalone or it can be shared. There seem to be occasions for both, don’t you think? When it is time to share, you’ll know. Like a tiny candle in the dark, if you try to cover it or hide it, it will go out. When you find something helpful, beautiful and uplifting, share it. I find we often are so eager to share the ugliness of life, why not share the beautiful as well, or perhaps more so. Others can usually find ugliness all by themselves; sometimes we need help to find beauty. Therefore, hug your child, give the dog a new bone, drag a piece of yarn across the floor for the cat and greet your loved ones with a smile.
There is a line in that old film DOC HOLLYWOOD which I’ve always loved. An old woman comes to see the doctor and complains she is seeing spots before her eyes. He removes her glasses and cleans off the lens. He hands them back to her and she proclaims, “I’m cured.” Let us all remove our metaphorical smudged lenses.
To quote Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything that is beautiful, for beauty is God’s handwriting—a wayside sacrament. Welcome it in every fair face, in every fair sky, in every flower, and thank God for it is a cup of blessing.”
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