Any beginner runner knows about the stitches. Those sudden bouts of pain right under your ribs. They are so uncomfortable. You feel that you can't breathe. You slow down. Maybe switch to walking. Maybe give up running altogether ("Not my thing").
But what if you are running because your child needs your help? What if you are running in order not to be late for your dream job interview? Or maybe you haven't seen your wife for a year. And her plane is about to land, but you are not there yet, and so you are running. Will those stitches stop you then?
Difficult thoughts and emotions are like those stitches. A panic attack. A depressive episode. A painful memory. They come and you can't breathe. And so you want to quit. You choose not to have the stitches. You look for another way of living your life. Stitch-free.
Suppose your life is that run. What is your run about? Is it just to pass the time? Are you running because you are supposed to? Are you running away from something? Or towards something? The stitches won't matter one bit when the final goal is meaningful enough. And if you keep running, the pain eventually subsides.