21DJC Day 15 – What is the Most Painful Thing You Have Ever Experienced To Date?

This is Day 15 of the 21-Day Journaling Challenge (21DJC) for Nov 2011. View list of tasks: 21DJC Overview.

Hi everyone – Welcome to Day 15 of 21DJC! :) We’re now in the 3rd and final week of our 21-Day Journaling Challenge!

Yesterday’s question was: “What Is Love?“. (Read the responses.)

Here are some beautiful responses from some participants:

“Love is faithful, it is everlasting, it is patient and kind. It’s an appreciation for another person in spite of or because of their faults and problems.” – Peggy

“Love means accepting a person for what they are. Love means that warm, happy feeling you get when you are near, or think about the object of your love. Love means feeling safe, and appreciated.” - Julia Shirey

“Love is feeling part of Something Greater than myself, a feeling of being “home” with myself in the Presence of that Greater Self. Love actually to me is feeling connected to The Source, the Place inside my Highest Self that exists simply because the Spark of Divine breathed me into existence. Love is the feeling of warmth I feel in my heart when I help others, or give freely to others.” – Brett

“Surprisingly, I find it hard to describe love in words or phrases. So move on to feeling and emotion. Upon reading or hearing the word ‘love’ if feel extremely happy and joyful. And I found when I’m happy and joyful. I’m feeling the emotion of love. I can smile towards others, nice to others, content, and at peace.” – Fiat

“Love is a total commitment to the ultimate good of the beloved.
Love is not a mere feeling… it goes beyond that, into wordless devotion.” – Prion

“Love to me right now is nothing more than feeling compassion for fellow humankind or earthlings. It fuels me for what I’m doing and with whom I’m hanging out or having a conversation.” – lotusbleu

“Love, to me, is the bond that connects me to everyone else in the world.” – Jeffrey Q

“Love is confidence; appreciation; acceptance; trust; communication; kindness; sharing. Love means giving second chances and working towards better self, with support and encouragement. Love means being geared up to do what drives you forward and never get tired of them.” – Viole

“Love for me means sharing caring respectful warm heart felt relationships, giving without conditions, spontaneity openness and frankness.” – Bob

“[Love] means to accept others and be accepted for who one really are. It means to stay and stick with somebody in the bad and the good, it’s to give without wanting and spend quality time together. … Love is making a silly random joke to put a smile on another person when everything feels like it will end, love is when you give it all up for another and love is when you feel loved and love in return. :heart: ” – fufu

“This is the first time I read all the comments before posting. So this smile on my face? That’s love. To get to know you and your deepest thoughts. Beautiful people with beautiful souls, thank you. :) ” – Andreea

“Love to me is when you know that you [are] not perfect and you don’t expect perfection from others. First you have to love yourself to love others. Loving others the way you love yourself. … Seeing all of someone’s good qualities as opposed to thinking about all their bad qualities. ” – Vanessa

“To me, love means accepting people as they are, not trying to change them into who you think they should be. Unconditional acceptance without judgment. Knowing when to hang on and when to let go. Unconditional respect without judgment. If understanding is not possible, having a true yearning to understand. Seeing someone’s eyes light up when they see you or vice versa.” - Stella Zorro

“Love to me is like a synonym for care and understanding…
Love is where no lies exist…..the faces of the two should have a spring water like clarity
Love is where no need for unnecessary pushing and fussing exists.” – ASLO

For me… Love is transcendent. Love is the universal link that binds all living beings together.

Love is what sets apart the living beings from the non-living things. Love is what we live for. Love is the reason we are alive. Love is the reason we will continue to live.

Love makes us grow stronger, greater, better, more beautiful, than we would be by ourselves.

Love is greater than anything there is in the world.

Love is what I have for all of you, and love is what keeps me going every day.

I love all of  you.

With that said, let’s now move to today’s question!

21DJC Day 15

Yesterday we talked about love – what it is and what it means to us. Today’s question is about the emotion that’s on the other end of the spectrum – Pain.

What is the Most Painful Thing You Have Ever Experienced To Date?

What is the Most Painful Thing You've Ever Had To Experience To Date?

Think back to all your life experiences to date. Can you point out one incident which has been the most painful to you in the past X years you have been alive? What incident was it? What happened during the incident? And why was it painful to you?

(Painful can be defined as anything that makes you feel sad, upset, sorrowful, depressed, pained.)

Put on your reflection cap and let your thoughts flow. Below is an empty form which you can use to write your answers to the question. Treat it as your private 21DJC journaling “room”, if you will. You will be seeing this form every day, for the 21 days of the challenge. There’s a button for you to keep track of your word count too, if you’re interested.

(Note you will not see the form below if you’re viewing this in your email client. Visit the actual post online to see the form.)

What is the Most Painful Thing You Have Ever Experienced To Date?

Your Task Today:

  1. Reflect and answer today’s question. There’s no word limit – whether minimum or maximum. Write as few or as many words as you want. It’s all up to what you want to express!
  2. Share your answer. After you are done writing, copy and paste your answer in the comments area and post it there.
  3. Check out other participants’ answers. Other participants will be sharing their answers too, so feel free to read and reply to their answers. This is a group course, so let’s support each other in these 21 days.
Look forward to reading your answers! :D

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165 Responses | Share Your Results!

  1. raluca says:

    the most painful thing i have had to experience was having to face my mother’s death and breaking up after my first relationship in the same month. i was 17. but the problem was much more complex than that. my mother died from cancer. we first found out she was ill when i was 12. that’s when the nightmare started. i was a chubby, lively child. i would always laugh and run around and never said no to sweets. things changed jut months after my mom’s first intervention. i remember i was 6 th grade. a month or two after my mom was diagnosed , i suddenly got the feeling that i was extremely ugly and fat and i developed a huge rage against myself. i graduetlly started to eat less and less, talk less and less. i remember that every little thing hurt me on the inside. everybody was disgusted by me, at least so i thought.
    i didn’t get along very well with my mother. we would almost always fight. she was a choleric artist, a piano player, and sometimes words she wouldn’t want to slipped from her mouth when she was angry. mine too. actually, everybody says things they don’t mean to say when they’re angry. anyway. i lost more and more weight. at first everybody was glad, i finally managed to have a normal weight, i looked better. but i hated my body even more. i remember once i cried because my father accidentally put a tablespoon of sugar in my glass of milk and i discovered after i drank it. by the end of the 8th grade i was diagnosed with anorexia. i started making friends with the rebels, started smoking, made friends with a schizofrenic. my grades were actually great but after that they weren’t so good. the ninth grade was one of the worse and best periods of my life. the first year in highschool.
    my weight was healthy again, i started eating again, i put weight very fast. my mother did chimiotherapy. i entered a drama club for teenagers and i discovered that theater was the love of my life. school was becoming a disaster. although my weight went back on, i was still very depressed and still hated my body and i didn’t eat like a normal person, i had very strange eating patterns. i started to cut my wrists, started to totally neglect the way i looked. my relationship with my parents was a total disaster. i had no friends, nobody to talk to, except my schizofrenic older friend. i lost my head totally. everybody at school started talking about me, started avoiding me, teachers thought i should be hospitalized. my mom went to school and a teacher told her: “lady, get your child out of here and put her in a hospital”. that really hurt, but i couldn’t control whatever was going on with me. then one day my parents discovered i cut my wrists and it was horrible, i went to a psichiatrist, they gave me antidepressants and diagnosed me with mild depression.
    i changed my school, met a guy. fell in love, changed my drama club, made new friends. the pills really helped. but the fear that my boyfriend would leave me was overwhelming. i started taking birthcontrol pills and in no time i was really fat. people started laughing again about my weight, even my dad who until then would fear i would die from anorexia. i was so confused. luckily i had my theater, i would go to see plays, i would dream about one actor who was actually sort of ugly but to me it was like a thought that would help me escape from the nightmare that was my life. eventually what i feared most happened, my boyfriend broke up with me that was the first worse thing that happened to me. i started taking the example of my friend, who was sleeping with almost everybody because of the pain and the antidepressants.
    then my boyfriend wanted to make up but he would treat me really bad, he would look at me like i was dirt and would just use me for sex. then, at my 17 th birthday, he broke up with me again, in the same week, my mother discovered that cancer had spread all over her body and had to be hospitalized. i remember that i called him crying, telling him about my mom and he would beg me to leave him alone. i fell so hurt even with pills, it was the worse pain ever. you don’t want t know. it was like..i had nothing. but fortunetly, i did. i had my acting. i remember i had a play in that same week and it went well. then the next week i went in a bar with some classmates during classes and drank so much i lost my consciousness and woke up in the hospital. i remember seeing only white light and my mom. i remember i told her i was sorry. i treated my mom very badly. i don’t understand why. i just couldn’t accept that she was going to die. i really really didn’t think she would. but one month later she did. on 26th December. i will remember that period all my life. it was like a dream. everything was like a dream. everything was surreal.
    it was like a fucking fantasy.

    Like: Thumb up 0

    • Andreea says:

      Your name sounds familiar, I guess we’re from same country (?) :)
      Seems you already had your share of misery, hope you’re better now.
      Good luck with your acting!
      PS. daca esti de aici, poate te vad pe scena la teatru candva :)

      Like: Thumb up 0

  2. Borjana says:

    The most painful thing I’ve went through was death of my father.

    I was nine years old when my father got cancer, since i was very yang my family wanted to protect me from that so i knew that my father was sick but i didn’t know how much. And than one day after my birthday celebration my mom sent me off to my cousins house, i knew that my father was in the hospital. And day after she told me he has died. That was the most painful experience in my life…i felt pain literally rushing through my chest, it was so hard for me and in my mind very sudden.

    I don’t know that i will ever face something so painful in my entire life.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  3. Ish says:

    My most painful experience was the death of my father in 2000.

    Losing someone close is always painful, but in my case it was more so because it happened so suddenly. I think that if he had been sick, it would have been easier; I would have had the time to prepare and accept the fact, to tell him how much I love him and to “say goodbye”. It is hard to put into words how I felt that day, hoping that there was an error, that his heart was still beating, my mother’s distress and the emptiness that followed.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  4. Ankita says:

    The most painful experience I’ve had so far is to allow myself to be taken advantage of emotionally, to be betrayed by a so-called best friend, and to allow myself to turn into an enemy through self-sabotage. However, I believe that these events were a blessing in disguise because if they had never happened–I never would have grown. I am trying to let go of the negativity and view everything in a positive light.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  5. Taffi says:

    Painful times i have had
    Times when i never thought would be glad
    Ideas which tore the heart a new
    Have happened to me times a few

    Amazing how things which may seem
    Trivial now, burnt like on a fresh wound kerosine
    Little incidents in a child’s universe
    Haunt me now like a curse

    I remember the time when i was a child
    Ready to grow and face the wild
    I learnt about death and hate for the first time
    Filled up my heart with grime

    I saw them treat fellow men like beasts
    Throw them food, and not give them treats
    Sit on the floor you poor beggar, they would say
    Always haggle for the price, and never pay

    I’ll tell you of the time when i left my folks
    I was all happy , cracking jokes
    Now that i think about it, it was a sad day
    Had no connection with anyone in a tight way

    I lost my best friend to the war in afghanistan
    That day, i hated most the taliban
    We were tight , were gonna have love abound
    But God did not allow him to stick around

    When people i respected fell in grace
    Their hypocrisy made em fall flat on their face
    When trust was broken, pride polluted my friends
    These are the most painful of trends

    The day when my gay friend was found dead
    Lying overdosed, in his bloody bed
    No longer could he handle the ridicule and abuse
    May no one have to walk a mile in his shoes

    More painful days i have not had is a lie
    But i plead to you, do not pry
    Not ready to talk about those i am for now
    Those bridges will be crossed someday, somehow.

    I do declare the worst of all
    Was when i truly understood my fall
    When i realized that i cant do anything to match
    All the sins my soul does hatch

    it was so painful to recognize
    Fall from the pedestal in my own eyes
    See the grossness of my own soul and mind
    Where in here can i beauty find?

    My only hope is to grow
    In better examples and put on a show
    Share the love been given to me
    And the message which set me free

    Like: Thumb up +1

  6. cloudio says:

    Is it the most painful what have you perceived as painful, or what do you think damaged you the most?

    I think my parents divorced affected me maybe more than everything, but I was 7 when it happened and it is something I realized only later, little by little.

    Chasing my father who always escaped his duties until I gave up 3 years ago was the most devastating consequence.

    What I felt as the most painful event? Surely being rejected when you fall in love, and everytime feels harder.

    Also betrayal of people you give your trust is always extremely painful too me.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  7. nicole says:

    my mother’s death – i was so frightened and always felt like i never treated her ‘right’ simply because I never could acknowledge and face the fact that she was dying. I always thought somehow she will always be here for me with me, with our family. What can I say, she was the pillar of strength that held my family together.

    sometimes i miss her so much it’s like im a teen again with the loss anew. this especially so when i feel lost, or when I feel no one understands enough or believes in me enough. A mother’s love is always great that way.

    still, what we had was great.. even though we had a relatively short time together, it was a great time. our time together also makes all the difference, she has shaped me to be who I am today. That is always something to be grateful for. :)

    big hug to everyone out there! who still persists and perseveres even tho life can be painful.

    Like: Thumb up +1

    • Andreea says:

      thanks Nicole, you are strong too! your mother helped you become the person you are today and that way, a part of her will always carry on within your heart. besides, you’ve got yourself another guardian angel up there :) :hug:

      no matter how hard my life was, having mom with me still, that’s the most important thing and I’m most grateful for that. unfortunately death is something we can’t change… but we can choose how to look at it and I’d like to think that it’s not an end, but the beginning of something greater.

      Like: Thumb up +1

  8. Fraser says:

    The thing that is the worst I have experienced..is the fact I have two gorgeous children and I have not been able to see them for 5 years. I see them each day in my mind and give them hugs. However I have not seen them since 2005.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  9. Raven says:

    One of the most painful experiences for me was 5 or 6 years ago when I was in an abusive and alcoholic relationship by my own choice (that’s the painful part really) and stayed in it for almost a year or over a year….I don’t even recal. It felt like forever.

    There is always pain in relationship of this nature but I find it so painful in my mind and memory because I lost myself and my family and friends during that period of time. I LET that happen to me, to them and it hurts inside when I think about the time I lost with those I love that really love me. I was so busy trying to “save” him and help him and prove that I “loved him enough” that he could change and I would help him, that I let him treat me in simply appalling ways that no human deserves and it wasn’t until one night when he finally drew blood and left permanent physical marks, that I left (again) in the middle of the night with none of my possessions and I realized how many emotional and mental marks had already accumulated in the time I had been with him. I pushed past all the pain of how he treated me in the hopes that my crusade would succeed. I would be enough, I would love him enough, I would do everything the right way, the perfect way and he would stop drinking and saying hateful things. I just wasn’t trying hard enough that’s all. I wasn’t showing that I loved him enough.

    After so many years have past and I am in a safe and loving enviroment and a beautiful and loving relationship with my one true “meant to be with” person for life and I have always thought that all that is in the past. I have learned that you cannot make someone change for any reason. It has nothing to do with you or who you are or how much you love them. There is only one way a person can be saved and only one person who can save them, and that is themselves. No acceptions.
    But every so often I still have the nightmares, and I still find myself reconditioning areas of self-worth and value in my everyday life. If I was truly OK and over this and it was all in the past I wouldn’t have such awful nightmares anymore. I wouldn’t go over all those little moments in my mind over and over. I wouldn’t still feel badly about myself for having been that weak person. I am NOT that person!!! But who am I yelling this at?? Who am I trying to convince? My family never thought that I was and never understood why I as doing what I was doing.

    This is one of those situations that really was less often physical pain thank goodness, but I still remember it as the most painful because of my choices and the choices I didn’t make correctly at the time. I had so much blame for myself and my weakness and my stupidity and the fact that I allowed my poor choices to effect my family and friends. I don’t blame him. I blame me…and I must not have “worked through” all of my feelings and issues from that time if I still have those dreams where I wake up and actually feel the need to call my boyfriend and my sisters and hear them tell me that they really do love me and I really am worth loving. I know it to be true. I KNOW I am worthy of love and I love myself very much. But my sub-concious self must not be as aware and convinced as the rest of me….I don’t know where you go from there???
    So I guess I am asking for help….Anyone have any suggestions? I don’t know if I answered this question in the vein of thought it was intended but apparently I needed to talk about this anyway. :(

    Like: Thumb up +1

    • Andreea says:

      Keep saying how much you love yourself and treat yourself with kindness every single moment and your subconscious mind will feel it too, eventually. It’s harder to make some changes in there, at least we’re not aware of them… it takes time :)

      and it’s true, you can’t change another person unless that person wants the same thing. i had a bad relationship too, abusive in an emotional way, but I was the bad character here… manipulating, emotional blackmailing and constantly blaming him of our problems, just so that he’d feel guilty and stay. but he left :) I mean he tried to fight and save our relationship for 2 years, but then he understood that I have to help myself first, that I’m dragging him down.

      You made the right call by leaving him and you shouldn’t blame yourself for staying so long with him. You had the strenght to leave :) Do you have any idea how many women are still stuck in an abusive relationship? And they are smart and successful and each of them worthy of something much better.

      Like: Thumb up +3

      • Raven says:

        Thanks Andreea,
        it was very helpful and healing to read your comments. It means alot coming from someone who has been on the other side too. I don’t think he may ever see what he is and what he has done to himself and others but you have amazing clarity, strength and courage yourself to accept responsibility for actions that are hurtful to others. Especially the ones we love. I have been in that position in different situations as well and it takes alot to really accept and take ownership of ones actions. :heart:

        You too are strong and I hope that you have been able to move on to more loving and wonderful things!!
        Thanks again sharing :hug:

        Like: Thumb up +1

  10. pksd says:

    When my friends died in an accident when I was a teenager.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  11. Aletta says:

    The one most painful experience that jumped to mind was the breakdown in communication between my MIL and me. The pain is still there, but I’ve forgotten a lot of the details.

    I had a very good relationship with my MIL until I started going out with her 4th son and it deteriorated even further when we got married. The big breakup came while we were planning the wedding. My MIL had a lot of negative things to say about what I/we did and would never be satisfied with anything we did, although we tried to include her. I even started reading a blog about MILfromhell just to feel a bit better about the situation I was in as I could not come to terms with it. At some point she tried to work out a truce with me, but I was so hurt that I told her that we’re beyond the point of no return, at which she just laughed as she couldn’t understand that to me friendships are ‘sacred’ and not something you play with. I don’t make many friends, but I’m extremely loyal to the friendships I do have.

    We’re been married for almost 13 years and I haven’t spoken with her for the last 3 years. This bothers me a lot as I’m not sure how to tackle a reconciliation with her as I’m not up to having such a toxic relationship again. I don’t keep my husband or kids from having healthy communication with her, though.

    Like: Thumb up 0

  12. Ninschubur says:

    The most painful thing I can remember is an email from my boyfriend in which he finished our relationship. He tried to be nice with that, but it turned out to be the exact opposite, the pure horror. I cried the whole night, feeling betrayed and alone. My values, my beliefs and my faith have been gone in one instant.

    Another long-lasting painful thing was a serious depression I had in 2004/2005. A huge feeling of being alone and misunderstanding. It was horrbile! I creid almost every day and my hair became grey when I was only 32 years old

    Like: Thumb up 0

  13. Emerita says:

    I am the eldest child so my coming was my parents’ first experience of having a child. I felt very close to my parents especially my father. I tried to do well in my studies because I wanted to please my parents and show my love and gratitude to them by making them happy as I grew up. When both my parents died in a sea mishap, I thought the world just ended and that there was no life afterwards. It was most painful because it was sudden. There was a lot of unfinished business between us that remained until now. I still regret not attaining closure because of their demise. But I pray for them wherever they may be and I believe they also know what I have been doing since they left.

    Like: Thumb up +1

  14. Charles says:

    The loss of my youngest Granddaughter. Her German born mother kidnapped her illegally and took her back to Germany. I’m heartbroken. I feel I may never see her again. She was like my own child. All I have left from her is her dog Carly which I got for her and kept at the farm and the large dog house we built together for Carly. It makes me cry to think about it.

    Like: Thumb up +1

  15. eran says:

    The death of a child was the most painful thing I have ever experienced. A distant 2nd place is 13 stitches in my tongue..

    Like: Thumb up 0


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