Monday, May 3, 2010

Favorite Mistakes

And the mistakes seem to me as crucial as the successes…Richard Holmes

I found the story of Humphry Davy’s discovery of laughing gas fascinating. Not only did he serendipitously discover that it numbed pain, but then, no one wanted to use it. It seems that physicians believed that patients who expressed pain would be able to cope with surgery. They believed the pain showed that the body was fighting and it was a good thing. Ouch.

I’m reminded of people who were in painful marriages and continued, feeling they should be experiencing the pain, that it was part of a real relationship. Often these same people experience amazing relief after divorce. I’m not saying get divorced, I’m just saying that you have to listen to your pain. I hear this often about jobs . The job is painful and it’s painful to consider leaving. Continuing in the pain is perhaps not such a good thing. Continuing in one’s mistake is also perhaps not such a good thing.

It took 40 years for doctors to use nitrous oxide in surgeries. Aren’t we glad they finally figured it out? So how about you? Have you finally figured it out? What have you learned from the mistakes of your marriage? This is the glorious part of making mistakes…the ability to learn from them.

Read about the Humphry Davy story.

Listen to Sheryl Crow, My Favorite Mistake

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