For Healthcare Workers: Turn Their Pain Into Power

A short post to share a song you probably already know:

I first heard Superheroes by The Script sometime last year and it pretty much had me in tears. Granted, it’s probably the combination of the Sowetan setting of the music video and the absolutely heartbreaking plus uplifting subject matter (how’s that for messing with your emotions?).

This is the thought that keeps me going when I get angry with the world for the way my patients suffer.

Turn their pain into power.

When one patient after the other in Antenatal Clinic is a teenager, and I feel angry about their bad decisions and angry at their parents for not looking after them well enough and ANGRY with whatever boy did this to her…

I ask them if they go to school. What they want to study after school. Affirm that yes, that’s a great decision, and yes, you can do it.

Turn their pain into power.

When mothers giving birth are HIV-positive and non-compliant on their medication and bitter with life, I ask them what their dream for their child is. Encourage them that they can be around to see their kid succeed.

Turn their pain into power.

When everything is slow and the system fails my patients and I want to become despondent because we work so damn HARD but sometimes it seems that nothing changes.

Turn their pain into power.

It is not an antidote against burnout, but it may be an antidote against hopelessness. Against giving up. Against becoming average. Because if they are stronger than you know, aren’t we as well?


When you’ve been fighting for it all your life
You’ve been struggling to make things right
That’s how a superhero learns to fly
Every day, every hour
Turn the pain into power


  1. Nancy Ackelson says:

    I am so grateful that you care like this Mariechen. You are so wise to know that you will need to nourish your heart and soul and body along the way as you face all the harsh realities that will otherwise deplete you. “Turn the pain into pawer” – awesome!

    1. barefootmegz says:

      Thank you Nancy – I’ve had a lot of encouragement from great mentors, so that helps. Otherwise I’d be depleted ages ago!

  2. Read Robyn says:

    I hadn’t heard that song before. The music video is just as beautiful as the lyrics. Thank you for sharing it.

    1. barefootmegz says:

      You’re welcome – I’m glad you liked it!

  3. A. Patterson says:

    I think everyone could do with having this message in their lives. Beautiful post x

    1. barefootmegz says:

      Thank you so much!

  4. harveylisam says:

    This is so important — thank you for sharing! We have so much power to reshape people’s attitudes or help them see a different perspective we they’re struggling.

    1. barefootmegz says:

      I really hope that if I achieve only one thing a day, that it will be this. 🙂

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