It's Ok to Cry
Yesterday it finally hit me. And it hit me hard. Our youngest son had a massive melt-down and then as I was tucking him into bed, between sobs he cried, "I miss my friends. I miss my school. I miss everything."
My heart broke. The depression I've been feeling. The gloom hoovering over our family. Everything summed up into three simple sentences by my nine-year-old.
My eyes misted up with him as all I could whisper back was, "I know, buddy. Me too. I'm so sorry. This sucks."
It wasn't until I got into bed I allowed myself to sink into the tears I had been holding back...and they came in big heaping waves.
I cried for my children, whose interaction with their friends, neighbors, and teachers has had to come to a screeching halt.
I cried because I've been guilting myself over the feelings of depression and how that has been draining any desire I would normally have to play with my kids or make them do their school work or plan anything that will help them through this.
I cried because I don't feel like there's any room for those who are feeling depressed, alone, angry, or frustrated.
I cried because the strong leadership we need right now in this country is, at its best, nowhere to be seen and at its worst, divisive, unaccountable, and irresponsible.
I cried because we know people who have died of this horrible virus.
I cried because we have family and friends who work at the hospitals who are only given one mask to wear a day, just one example of the serious shortage in supplies for those putting their lives and their family's lives on the line.
I cried for the millions of people who have lost their jobs over the last few weeks who don't know how they're going to pay their bills or feed their families.
I cried for those who have had to die alone.
I cried for those who have not been able to be there with their loved ones as their lives are cut short by this terrible virus. No last words. No last kisses. No last hugs.
I cried because there are still people who think this is all some big hoax conspiracy theory.
I cried because this whole situation sucks.
Even though my crying didn't solve anything, the unleashing of tears helped me to feel what I have been storing up inside of me over the last few weeks. I may not be able to change the things I cried about, the situation we find ourselves in, or how my kids are feeling.
What I can do, is be willing to engage with my own feelings and not be afraid of them.
I can admit that this is hard, it sucks, and I hate it.
I can complain and cry to God and know He is here with me, not judging me for crying and complaining.
I can know that I am still loved and cared for even in the midst of hardship, pain, loss, lack, and loneliness.
Sisters and brothers, may you know that it's ok to grumble and complain sometimes. May you know that you don't have to hold it all together all the time. May you know that you are not alone. May you know that your feelings matter. May you know that God is right here with you, experiencing what you are experiencing, and loving you through it.