Friday, March 4, 2011

crying is okay

If you're going through a difficult time, crying is okay.

I sometimes remind myself of this when I find myself needing to cry at the most random times. I remember everything I've been through, have a good cry, sometimes find someone to cry with so I'm not allowing myself to wallow in sadness, and then I move on.

I obviously don't know a lot about what other people do when they are on their own, but I do know that for me sometimes crying feels wrong or unnecessary or "do I really need to cry again?" I know that's not true, but those thoughts have come. I'm sure if I've felt those types of emotions, others have too. And I've decided (and I know it to be fact) that crying is okay. It doesn't mean you're "not doing good" and it might not even mean you're having a bad day. It just means you're taking time to remember whatever you've lost or whatever you've been hurt by. So let yourself cry if you're facing difficulty or loss or hurt. It's okay.

Do remember though that you can't cry forever. Every time I cry I make sure it doesn't become an hours-long pity party. I cry, recognize my sadness and spend moments reflecting on my loss, but then I look to something else - the good ahead, the fact that it will somehow be okay - something that will help me remember life is living now, not in the past.

The last part of Psalm 30:5 says, "weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning." Your crying can and should end for that moment. You'll cry again another time remembering whatever you're going through. Let yourself have those moments, and then pick yourself up again and move on.

Hopefully that makes sense what I'm trying to say. There's a ditch on either side--stuffing it inside and never crying about anything is one ditch. The other ditch is crying all the time and living in a depressed state. Neither are healthy. But you can legitimately balance the two. Sometimes it takes work. Last night I had a good cry and I honestly felt like I could cry for hours I was so sad at the time (and I had an okay day, it just was triggered by something!), but after taking some time reflecting on and weeping for some of the losses I've experienced here on earth, I moved on... in this case, I think I went on to watch who made it through the wild card round of American Idol. :-) Yeah, TV isn't always the best alternative, but sometimes it's an easy way to distract yourself so you can move on. Other times just changing the topic of conversation works. Plenty of times Erik and I move on by telling silly stories or playing with Tucker. Listening to Christian music, reading your Bible... just moving on so we don't wallow.

Like I said, ditches exist when it comes to crying over what you've lost in life (because I think we've all lost something at some point), but a middle road also exists and I pray that God shows you how to walk that as you walk through whatever loss you face in life.

Psalm 30
 1 I will exalt you, Lord,
   for you lifted me out of the depths
   and did not let my enemies gloat over me.
2 Lord my God, I called to you for help,
   and you healed me.
3 You, Lord, brought me up from the realm of the dead;
   you spared me from going down to the pit.
 4 Sing the praises of the Lord, you his faithful people;
   praise his holy name.
5 For his anger lasts only a moment,
   but his favor lasts a lifetime;
weeping may stay for the night,
   but rejoicing comes in the morning.
 6 When I felt secure, I said,
   “I will never be shaken.”
7 Lord, when you favored me,
   you made my royal mountain stand firm;
but when you hid your face,
   I was dismayed.
 8 To you, Lord, I called;
   to the Lord I cried for mercy:
9 “What is gained if I am silenced,
   if I go down to the pit?
Will the dust praise you?
   Will it proclaim your faithfulness?
10 Hear, Lord, and be merciful to me;
   Lord, be my help.”
 11 You turned my wailing into dancing;
   you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy,
12 that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent.
   Lord my God, I will praise you forever.

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