Some types of pain are worth it.
The crick in your neck caused by spending a morning looking for gargoyles on the pillars and cornices of the epically beautiful buildings in Jozi’s CBD, while stuck in Commissioner Street traffic. And spying a random film shoot instead, involving five black cows with scary-looking horns, patiently waiting in their tiny enclosure snuggled between two venerable sort-of skyscrapers.
The ache in your lower back and blisters on your palms after attacking the living room wall with lime-green paint and a roller, trying to reach as high as your arms can reach… And the ache in your eyes when the sun catches said wall for the first time. Green is good, people!
Knuckles and fingers that feel cracked from punching a heavy boxing bag… And elbows and knees bruised and blue from pursuing their double life as deadly weapons.
The calluses on your fingertips from hours of patiently picking away on your guitar, trying to prove to yourself (and the neighbours) that somewhere in there lies a profound musical talent just waiting to take wing and scare the Hadedas shitless.
Torn nails stained with dirt from an ill-advised gardening attempt: you have to hide them from sight for weeks before they recover.
A lovebite with the emphasis on bite, lips bruised and botoxed by kissing.
The inability to move your head, neck and shoulders after an insane night of frantically trying to prove that you can still mosh with the best of those pansy-assed teenagers…
The chafe marks and scratches on your feet and ankles after your first surfing lesson – even realizing that blood in the water attracts sharks didn’t dull the bliss of feeling so physically alive. And the sunburn and sandburn and waterburn (believe me) just heightened the experience.
The teethmarks and scratches on your hands, arms and any available extremities after a game of “who wants to catch the rat in the roof?” with Her Royal Highness Queen Peroni.
The tiny little scar that sometimes still throbs (hey, in my head, at least!) when remembering the tiny little feral cat that launched an insane psycho B-grade-monster-hellcat-attack to protect her kittens. She’s lucky I didn’t dropkick her: we fed and housed them instead.
And that choked-up feeling that hurts your heart when you suddenly just love somebody or something an awful lot. More than your body can stand. And perfect.