Life in progress


Pain is a Great Motivator

I’m truly amazed at what I’ve learned as a response to the pain in my right shoulder. What I’ve accomplished leads me to believe that perhaps pain is responsible for the entire evolution of man.

Okay, maybe not… but just maybe.

For all of the fifty-one years I’ve been on this earth I’ve been right-handed. Apart from holding a fork, and even then only when I have a knife in my right, I’ve never done much with it. Oh, and touch-typing of course. But even then, I can’t manage to hit the space bar with my left thumb without seriously thinking about it. Doing so slows me down considerably, so I’ll stop trying.

But now! now I’m able to do almost everything except write with it. And why? Why do I use my left hand now without even thinking about it? Because for most things, using my right is excruciating. Eating, drinking from a cup, brushing my hair, reaching for things, even wiping my butt; I’ve suddenly become ambidextrous. Pain has taught me how to do all these things at more than half a century old!

So I got to thinking about the evolution of man and how pain might have helped us get to where we are. Think about technology for instance. Imagine how many blisters we’d have and how wrinkled our skin would be if we actually had to walk and then swim to another continent! Not to mention being eaten by fish with numerous rows of teeth! And what about grocery stores. How much hunger would we have to endure if we had to wait for, say, a potato to grow. Or a cow. With the invention of aisles upon aisles of ready-grown food we don’t have to worry about that!

So I conclude that pain must be the greatest motivator in the world. Can you think of one better? I think not!