The Rain Inside

Annie Bell
Jan 24 · 3 min read
Photo by pan xiaozhen on Unsplash

I can learn to love the pain
I can make it part of me
Let it grow on me
Try it on for size

I can get used to the rain
I can let it keep me company
Let it soak into me
It’ll fill the emptiness inside

I can take the pain
After a while, pain and bliss feel the same
Give it time
And I’ll discern no difference

When I’ve given up on tears
To put me to sleep at night
I’ll listen to the sound of the rain
That drowns me from inside

I tell myself it can’t be different
I tell myself I am the one to blame
I should tell myself nothing

Because soon I will love this pain —
In a twisted, broken way

The rain will consume the sunshine
Unless I let myself run away

I can take the pain
But I will never be the same

By Annie Bell
November 13, 2019


What you just read is the second version of this poem. I wrote the very first version 13 years ago. To this day, this poem is still hard for me to read. Reading it is like a punch to the gut. I feel sad for the part of me that wrote it.

As I was re-reading it recently, I asked myself what parts of it I could still relate to, and then I decided to change the parts I could no longer relate to. From a literary standpoint, it is fascinating how changing a few words can give so much new meaning. From a personal standpoint, this poem still shocks me.

I am also surprised by how much I can still relate to these expressed feelings 13 years later. While I have a lot of joy in my life these days, the rain always finds its way back in — at least briefly — and when it does, the pain feels just as this poem describes it. Emotional pain is often a chronic thing.

Just for fun (if one can even use the word fun along-side such a gut-wrenching poem), I included the original from July of 2006. I wrote this while I was studying abroad in France. At the time, I was reflecting nostalgically about the small scraps of good times buried deep within an emotionally abusive relationship waiting for me back in the United States. Even though an entire ocean lay between us, emotional foul play could still put me in a dark enough place to write this:


I can learn to love the pain
I can make it part of me
Let it grow on me
Try it on for size

I can get used to the rain
I can let it keep me company
Let it soak into me
It’ll fill the emptiness inside

I can take the pain
After a while pain and bliss feel the same
Give it time
And I’ll see no difference

When I’ve given up on tears
To put me to sleep at night
I’ll listen to the sound of the rain
That drowns me from inside

Tell me that you’ll be different
Tell me we’ll be the same
Tell me something

Because soon I will love this pain
More than I can say
The rain will seem like sunshine
The day you come to stay

I can take the pain
Just tell me something will be the same

By Annie Bell
July 2006

Invisible Illness

We don't talk enough about mental health.

Annie Bell

Written by

I empower women through my writing & art. • I am shamelessly, imperfectly & wholeheartedly me • Instagram: @wholeheartedempire

Invisible Illness

We don't talk enough about mental health.

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