I hate that one.
I mean, I want a million dollars. I want it a lot. A lot. I want it enough for a boatload of people.
But I still don't have a million dollars.
Or a boyfriend.
Who was talking about boyfriends? Not me!
Anyway, pffftttt on wanting it enough.
No, this author asked the reader a simple question - one that threw me a bit.
"What are you willing to suffer for?"
Suffer? What am I willing to suffer for?
My first reaction was why?! Why do I have to suffer for anything I want? It's such a rotten word, isn't it? And awful in reality. I suffered my way through chemo. I suffered with a broken arm. I suffered through grief and loss and, and, and...
Suffering is miserable! It's awful! I don't want to suffer!
But then I thought about it a little more. I thought about what I say I want in my life. Everything - and I mean everything I want - will require work. Effort. Sacrifice.
For example, if I want to be in better shape, I have to work hard. I have to exercise. I have to spend a lot of time prepping healthy meals (and I actually have to eat them, too, instead of letting all the vegetables liquify in the crisper [which is really a misnomer ((when referring to my fridge, anyway)), as liquid is pretty much the opposite of crisp. Am I right?]).
Anyhoo, will all this getting-in-shape stuff actually be painful? Not really (except when the trainer at the gym is feeling especially sadistic). But it takes a lot of effort (versus the little effort it takes to stuff my face full of Reese's Cups). It takes a lot of work (whereas, the McDonald's drive-thru takes none). It takes a lot of time (time I could spend sacked out on the couch watching episodes of Vampire Diaries) (Shut up. I take enough flack from my kid for watching it. Two words for you - Ian Somerhalder. That is all).
Also, if I want to actually write something worthy of publication (like I say I do), I have to actually, you know, write, even when I don't feel like writing. Even when I feel like I have nothing to say. Even when I feel like everything I have to say is dull and stupid and makes no sense. And I have to cut back on Vampire Diaries (sigh) and spend less time on Facebook.
I have to suffer.
And if I actually want to find, develop, and maintain a relationship, with, you know, a guy (who is not my dog), then I have to get out there, meet people, expend some effort, risk (and most likely deal with) rejection.
I have to suffer.
The suffering the author referred to isn't necessarily the sort that chemo or a broken bone brings on. It's the sort that requires us to step out of our comfortable lives and habits and into something unfamiliar, something difficult. It's about being uncomfortable.
And that's hard.
So, I asked myself, "Self? What are you willing to suffer for?"
And I got very quiet.
And you know that doesn't happen very often.
My failure to respond quickly bothered me.
It's still bothering me.
Sure, I go through spurts of 'suffering.' And when whatever thing I'm suffering for is new and cool, the discomfort isn't so bad. I breeze through it. But a few weeks or months in? When you'd think I'd have formed new habits? When you'd think it'd be getting easier? That's when the real suffering - the real discomfort - starts. And I get tired and resentful and it all gets difficult.
And I give up. I retreat back to my comfort zone.
Nearly every time.
I don't have staying power.
(I blame it on my parents, for letting me quit things when I was a kid. I wasn't willing to suffer then, either. It's why I never let my kid quit anything.)
So, I'm asking myself again, right now, "Self? What are you willing to suffer for? Like, long-term, don't-give-up, work-all-the-way-through-the-discomfort suffering?"
Yeah. The cat has, apparently, got my tongue.
I'll let you know when he gives it back...
So, what are you willing to suffer for?