Home > acceptance, avoidance, encouragement, feelings, hope, love, pain, poetry, safety > Encouragement for Those Who Are Weary

Encouragement for Those Who Are Weary

Greetings gentle readers,

I ran across an old song I haven’t heard in years that I wanted to share. I loved the song when it first came out in 1979 (for those of you born after that year, there is no need to point out how long ago that was, I was a senior in high school. Trust me, I know how long ago that was. 😀 ) but it speaks even more strongly to me today. It has been such a struggle to learn about how to handle the inevitable pain of life, in some other way than futilely attempting to avoid it. One of the best lessons taught to me by BN is that while pain is inevitable, the answer to pain is love. (See The relationship of love and pain and Love is the Answer for more detailed explanations of that truth). The love we find by connecting to other people, by sharing our burdens, by holding each other up. That is where we find the strength to face life challenges.

But there are moments for everyone where the pain can feel like too much and too overwhelming to face. For those of us without a secure base in early childhood, it can sometimes feel like pain is an inextricable part of love, or, even worse, all there is. During those moments, we need to be able to hang on to some sense that there is more than pain, that risking pain is worth it, that there is strength in us. Our feelings that tell us to just hold still, and not risk and to hold ourselves back are a Siren song, that leads us only towards death.  The safety it offers is only an illusion and one which holds us in a small cell of our own devising.

The old song I ran across is the perfect reminder of this truth (and SO much more succinct than me on the subject 🙂 ), so I wanted to share it. The song is The Rose by Bette Midler.  The original recording was from the movie “The Rose” which was a remake of “A Star is Born” and was a huge hit. I’ve included that original recording with lyrics in the second link below. The first link is a very powerful rendition of the song performed as a duet by Bette Midler and Wynonna Judd. And just in case this comes across as really sappy, BN is away until August 3rd and our last session on Monday was after a two and a half week break, so I suspect I’m a little emotional right now. 🙂

Duet with Bette Midler and Wynonna Judd

Original recording by Bette Midler with Lyrics

The Rose

Some say love, it is a river
That drowns the tender reed
Some say love, it is a razor
That leads your soul to bleed
Some say love, it is a hunger
An endless, aching need
I say love, it is a flower
And you, it’s only seed

It’s the heart afraid of breaking
That never learns to dance
It’s the dream afraid of waking
That never takes the chance
It’s the one who won’t be taken
Who cannot seem to give
And the soul afraid of dying
That never learns to live

When the night has been too lonely
And the road has been too long
And you think that love is only
For the lucky, and the strong
Just remember, in the winter
Fare beneath the bitter snows
Lies the seed that with the sun’s love
In the Spring becomes the rose

  1. Mand
    July 17, 2015 at 4:34 pm


    A choir my children were in a good few years ago singing this song. Thanks for the reminder. Still manages to make me cry, and right now, I need to cry.

    Hope you’re ok. Miss your blog entries when they don’t happen. Miss YOU. You matter to a lot of CSA survivors. Just thought I’d say that. Mand.


    • July 17, 2015 at 10:56 pm

      that was truly amazing. You must have been so proud of your children. Honestly, I could not believe the level and quality of that performance from such a young group. And good to know I’m not the only one with the tears. When I listened to this for the first time today, tears were just streaming down my face. Sometimes you just do need to cry.

      I am doing ok, life has just kind of continued to be relentessly challenging. : ) I came down with my first UTI this week, an experience I would prefer to never repeat. I have been so sick and today was my first fever free day. So between feeling sick and the antibiotic both my cognitive abilities and energy levels have been low. But I’m finally feeling better, thanks for asking. There’s been good stuff too! We just finished decorating our master bedroom, which we’ve been working on for years. 🙂 I made the drapes and picked out everything and I am thrilled with how it came out. Our room feels like a very peaceful sanctuary now. I really enjoy decorating but there’s always that scary time before you actually put it all together where you’re really not sure it’s going to work. But it did!

      I’m hoping to write some posts on my more recent work soon. Thank you, it’s good to know I’m missed. xx AG


      • Mand
        July 18, 2015 at 2:12 am

        Sorry to hear you’ve been ill. Glad you are feeling better. Yes- the Choir is amazing. They’ve won all sorts of things. Very proud of all the children who sing in it b

        Take gentle care

        Mand xx


  2. July 17, 2015 at 4:40 pm

    Ha, I sang along as I read the lyrics. I need to listen to that song again.


    • July 17, 2015 at 4:45 pm

      Also, I hadn’t listened to that song in years. I never really listened to the lyrics before. What a profound and beautiful song. Thank you for sharing.


      • July 17, 2015 at 10:58 pm

        Glad you also enjoyed hearing it again. And right? I have always loved that song, but wow did the lyrics go right through me this time. I really am glad that the response has been so good, I really was worried that I had gone over the edge from missing BN. 🙂 xx AG

        Liked by 1 person

        • July 18, 2015 at 2:54 am

          LOL, it would be pretty funny if you posted something like Taylor Swift=ish and thought it was the most beautiful profound thing ever. Yes! Shake it off! So deep! Never mind I need to go to bed.


  3. little blond girl
    July 17, 2015 at 6:09 pm

    I haven’t heard that song in forever. Thank you for sharing and reminding. Don’t know if that shows my age too :). I’m sorry to hear all the stuff that’s been going on for you lately, but somehow you manage to hold it together, if only to reach out through your blog. I’ve been barely able to survive the last while as I go on my own messy, confusing journey of discovery (though discovery seems like the wrong word, you know, like it might be fun or adventurous instead of painful and scary). And as of this coming Tuesday I’m into a month long break from my T due to overlapping holidays. The longest break we’ve had in a long while….
    I hope things are getting better, even with all the breaks…


    • July 17, 2015 at 11:06 pm

      It’s ok, we can be old ladies together. 🙂 I’m sorry to hear that you’ve been struggling through also. I so agree with you about the “journey of discovery,” it sounds like there will be breathtaking views and lovely picnics with just the right smattering of learning thrown in. While it’s actually more like driving down the side of Mt. Everest in a car with no brakes, very much including the white-knuckle grip on the steering wheel while screaming in terror. I am glad that though it’s so hard, you’re still standing. And I’m so sorry for the month break, that’s a long one. Its’ the worst when our vacations run into their vacations. I hope the time passes quickly for you.

      And as for me, things are getting better. My last session with BN on Monday actually surprised me in that instead of walking in and getting hysterical, i actually realized I was handling things really well, and even though it can feel difficult, it’s also getting easier to hang onto the “it’s all going to be ok” feeling. That I can feel upset, and stressed and scared but still know I’m ok. Wow, did it take BN a long time to pound that one in. 🙂 Stop by whenever you need to if it will help! xx AG


  4. Enid Breis
    July 17, 2015 at 7:24 pm

    This is so great and so moving! I understand your emotionality now. I haven’t seen my therapist in over 2 weeks. He returns July 27th. I never knew all the words. Thanks so much for giving them to me. You are a joy for me in this world.


    • July 17, 2015 at 11:10 pm

      What a lovely thought, that I am a joy for someone, thank you, I really was quite touched reading that. I’m glad you liked the song, although sorry to hear you’re in the same summer therapist absence trial along with so many others. I hope the 27th gets here on wings! xx AG


  5. TOF
    July 18, 2015 at 12:19 am

    I love this song! I must be the same age as you. Right now, I am so very sad. My therapist is retiring and moving away in two weeks. He gave me 3 months warning to try and process it, but I still feel so attached and scared. I’m not ready at all. I just needed to express myself to someone who would understand. Most people in my life don’t understand. Thank you for being here.


    • July 18, 2015 at 4:30 pm

      Hey TOF I can totally identify with your T retiring. I was devastated when my last T retired after probably 2years work. I thought I’d never get over it but I did.. The T I now see is just wonderful I am getting to work on a deeper level with him.. I know it’s not easy when your facing into it. Keep sharing here and allow all of your feelings to be expressed..

      Take care..


    • July 19, 2015 at 9:38 pm

      I’m very sorry you’re facing your T’s retirement. My first T retired and I know how difficult it can be. But I agree with Daring Greatly, in that even though it was really hard, I went on to work with BN. I have wonderful memories of my first T though and hold her near. I do know the grief will be hard but when you have a chance to work through it, you’ll get him back in another way. You might find it helpful to read my post about my first T retiring: Retirement of a Therapist – Part I. I also want to echo what Daring Greatly said about sharing here about how you’re feeling. I have wonderful readers and we all get why this is a major event and difficult. ~ AG


  6. July 18, 2015 at 4:24 pm

    Thank you for sharing AG… Have to say I sang along too as I read the words.. Such powerful lyrics..

    My T was diagnosed with cancer 3 weeks ago and I was thrown into shock, anger and total fear…I’m nearly 2 years seeing him and I can’t imagine him not being in my life right now.. He had surgery last Tuesday, he sent me a text to say all looked good for a full recovery.. There is no words to express the sheer joy I felt to receive his text… I don’t know how long he will be off work. I am trying to stay grounded and not go into the fear…

    Thank you AG and all who posts here too 👍


    • July 19, 2015 at 9:44 pm

      (((DG))) How utterly terrifying that must have been; I am very happy that you have heard he will make a full recovery. It’s lovely that your T kept you informed. It’s so hard when it’s our therapists both because they are so important but also because we can’t react and do the things we would normally do if someone we loved fell ill. I know it must be difficult to have him away but try to focus on realizing that the connection is real and intact even though you can’t see him right now. “This is the wonder that is keeping the starts apart, I carry your heart (I carry it in my heart).” I hope he returns swiftly. xx AG


  7. Ann
    July 18, 2015 at 6:05 pm

    AG, thanks for the song, I remember it well. To Little Blonde Girl, it is difficult to have a long break when you have attached to your therapist. With overlapping vacations, I didn’t see my T for 23 days.(Yes, I did count the days!) I have been in therapy for five years and figured the break wouldn’t be so bad. However, after my last session I cried for four days. I journaled, distracted myself, kept busy etc, but still felt like death. Finally I did some “magical thinking”. I took out a nickel and told myself this is my T’s nickel and it will keep me emotionally safe. To my shock, it worked! Life went on as normal and I coped well. (Something to do with object constancy). I am a 58 year old, educated, wife and mother yet I still had to soothe the scared four year old in me. I am still shocked that it worked!!! I am learning there are broken parts in me that haven’t caught up with the adult me.
    AG: This is your first UTI????? You have been blessed with an amazing bladder. UTIs are the worst. How are things going with your sister? I am glad that your work with your BN is going smoothly. Keep us posted on your journey when you are ready! Xoxo Ann


    • July 19, 2015 at 9:56 pm

      I always find that the first few days are often the hardest. I had a really good, calm session with BN, one during which we recognized a lot of progress, then I left and BLAM! The first couple days were just painful and I found myself very weepy. I ended up going back and reading some old posts and realizing (for the 456,758th time) that the lion’s share of the pain and it’s intensity is about the memories of being left and abandoned as a child. Once I realize that, it’s easier to hang on to the fact that BN isn’t abandoning me, still very much cares about me and will be back. Then I hear a song like “The Rose” and become a sodden mess again. 😀 23 days is a long break! I love what you did with the nickel! How very creative

      This was my first Ann, and now that I’ve had one, I am not regretting that fact in the least!! I saw the doctor on Monday and it really wasn’t until Saturday that I really felt better. My sister had another operation before she left the hospital to have a third stent put in, but headed home shortly thereafter, I did send flower arrangement and she contacted me on Facebook (after sending me a friend request) and gave me her phone number and asked to call so we could catch up. I did call and leave a voice mail, but have not heard back (she’s a lot like my mom in that she does not initiate contact). I may just leave it at that. I am very glad I sent the flowers as at least I know we’re on good terms. We’ll never be close and I’m fine with that, but at least I’m not braced for a really ugly scene when i go to my mom’s funeral someday. As a good friend of mine keeps telling me, i really need to get higher standards for happiness. 😀 But seriously, I’m glad I sent the flowers but am also fine with keeping a little distance, so all in all that was a good encounter with my FOO. I’m hoping to do more writing soon. We’ve been working on finally decorating our master bedroom, which we finished up this weekend. I am thrilled with how it came out (I am in a new recliner in the corner of my bedroom typing this. 🙂 ). My husband retires in two more weeks, then things should get a bit easier. Of course, i’m heading into another release… 🙂 xoxo AG


  8. Pop
    July 20, 2015 at 11:26 am

    Great post AG, I will look that song up later today on iTunes. The lyrics are fab. I’m not as present as I used to be in cyberspace but wanted you to know I read your stuff when I can. You’re totally right. Sharing our burdens, our pain, is truly the only way forward. Avoidance is an illusion. But it takes such courage if you’ve been burnt before, when you’ve had to do it all yourself. We all have a hole in our hearts, I thought a secure attachment filled the hole but I was wrong. It helps us draw a line around it, define it, contain it – drawing an outline of ourselves with the help of another person. I have so much gratitude to my T for staying with my pain. Stepping out into the light and feeling love and connection is such an amazing experience, but it involves repeatedly going through pain. I think we are all so so brave for going through this process.


    • July 21, 2015 at 6:38 pm

      I found myself nodding the whole time I was reading it. I loved your description of drawing a line around our hole. Healing doesn’t mean it goes away, but we do learn to manage it so that it no longer controls us and we are quicker to step over it. I spend less and less time dealing with triggered feelings. And you’re also right, that we are all very brave. It’s good to hear from you! Xx AG


  9. Moto
    July 20, 2015 at 1:09 pm

    AG this is one of my favorite songs! You know those ‘oldie’ songs are the best! I always thought of myself as born in the wrong era anyway! I hope these next few weeks fly by for you! I am sure you are counting down the days until your husband’s retirement as well! Thank you for sharing this!


    • July 21, 2015 at 6:41 pm

      You know how to hurt a gal LOL. “Oldie”. Ouch! 😀 That’s great you knew the song! And thank you, I do seem to be moving through the break well so far. And only a week and a half to go until my husband retires. We are very excited! Xx AG


      • Moto
        July 22, 2015 at 10:33 am

        AG!!! I didn’t mean it like that! HAHA that’s why I put it in brackets. =) I would add a wink face but I don’t know how!!

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Fullmoon08
    July 23, 2015 at 1:08 pm

    Hi AG! So glad you’re back have missed you and look for you almost as much as my therapist!
    1. Mine is away for 3 weeks…how do you cope? What do you do to get through the panic moments?
    2. Can you list top books you’ve loved? Anything… Attachment, therapy, self discovery, self help …


    • July 26, 2015 at 9:55 pm

      Hi Fullmoon08,
      I have several posts you’re going to love. 🙂 Sorry your going through such a long break. I’m two weeks into a three week break that was proceeded by a 10 day break, which was preceeded by a three week break. Scheduling has not been great this summer, so I sympathize!

      For getting through the three weeks, see Tis the Season: Strategies for Coping with a Therapist’s Absence Part I. It’s a two-parter, the link for the second post is at the end of the first.

      And for books, see Helpful Books. You might also want to do a search on “book” on my blog also, as I know there are other posts dealing with books… one of which is Book Review: How We Heal and Grow.

      Hope those help! ~ AG


  11. Lara H
    August 3, 2015 at 12:26 am

    This was always meaningful for me, especially in therapy. I included it on a CD I made for oldT about my therapy journey with him. Of course, he was an asshole and he returned it to me after he abandoned me. I still think it’s a wonderful song. Maybe I’ll share it with my current T one day. Thanks for writing about it. Hugs to you.


    • August 4, 2015 at 11:05 pm

      I remember you making those CDs. Talk about casting your pearls before swine! 🙂 It really is a wonderful song and if you decide to share it with your current T, I think you’ll be sharing with an audience that deserves to hear it. You know I want to slap your oldT into next week BUT I am very glad that in the end it lead you to your present T. Such an empathetic guy. 😀 Hugs, AG


    • August 17, 2015 at 10:52 pm

      Dang Lara. That’s crazy.


  12. bluegirl531
    August 14, 2015 at 8:49 am

    i just wanted to say a huge thank you for all your wonderful posts. you write with such eloquence and I identify with so much of what you say. I wish I was brave enough to be able to talk or write about these things. I loved the song – it is really beautiful 🙂 thank you 🙂


    • August 14, 2015 at 12:40 pm

      Welcome to my blog and thanks so much for taking the time to say this! I appreciate the affirmation and am very glad that you are finding reading here worthwhile. So you’re very welcome. 🙂 BTW, love your icon, it’s really beautiful. ~ AG


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