You Matter – Fighting Stigma, Sharing Stories
I have a friend learning to walk again, because she just had her third brain surgery in a year. I have a loved one who can barely sit or stand due to chronic, debilitating pain. I know people grieving deeply for lost family members. And people enduring discomfort, and uncertainties.
Struggle. It’s all around. And it matters.
Some people think their suffering is too small to express. They think speaking up is complaining. They think they aren’t worth empathy and support. “Someone always has it worse! Who am I to whine?”
I’m here today to say FUCK THAT NOISE. This isn’t the freaking Pain Olympics. This is human life. It’s messy and mucky and it hurts. I think it hurts more often than not. Our society just judges the sharing of the shit. So we’re not quite aware of the extent of common suffering.
Today whether you’re hooked up to chemo, or stuck in an MRI machine, sitting on a couch in a therapist’s office, or staring at a scale… whether you’re in a fetal position, or in traction, or quietly sipping tea between sobs… whether you’re writing your heart out, or saying “Hi, my name is ___,” or biting your lip and eyeing a razor… whether you’re in a closet, or on a street, or in a puddle at someone’s feet- you matter.
You matter, and you’re valid. Your suffering counts. It’s real.
Sharing isn’t bad. Expressing isn’t complaining.
We tell our stories because we want to heal. We speak up because we need support.
I just want you to know, and I want me to know, that we’re in this together, and we can choose to keep going. Honestly, we are rockstars. Thanks for showing up.