A Good Cry
By Bernadette A. Sahm
Like most of us facing the new altered state of living, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic and “shutting” down of places of gathering and our instruction to “social distance’ I found myself near tears. I was fighting back a good cry. Toughen up I told myself, soldier on, life goes on, we are all in this together. You are a leader and leadership demand that you … (fill in the blank)
But the truth is/was that I just wanted to cry, cry out of fear and out of frustration. What on earth is going on in this world? No church service, no Saint Patrick celebrations at our local restaurants and bars, cancelled meetings, stay 6-feet apart, don’t congregate in groups. What do we turn to in times like these? How do we get through it? I dislike most catch phrases, but I find myself saying “these are unprecedented times” and no “norm” to follow. Thank God, I have God and I have faith.
How do we get through this? For different people there will be a different answer and for me I am fortunate to have a wonderful husband who I enjoy spending time with and our favorite little pooch Chipper. The ocean gives my soul the peace and ability to just breathe, so fortunate to have a place to run too and appreciate the beach even more. And here at home, I have work that I enjoy and keeps my mind busy, and much can be done with my computer and telecommunications. I just came out of a very busy period.
Maybe just maybe I am supposed to relax and take in this “social distancing” for some soul searching and re-connecting with myself and all that is close to my heart and I hold dear. So thankful that we are experiencing an early spring in moderate temperatures and I can’t wait to work in the garden this weekend. Weeding and planting and fertilizing sounds extra special and even more comforting this year.
After over a week of feeling like I was constantly on the verge of crying I finally confided this in a dear friend and I was surprised at her quick response, “that is what I did yesterday” she said. She cried for all her good friends and family in Italy that have been hit so hard by this virus.
There have been many times in my life that I good cry served me well, like when Randy died and left me widowed to raise a toddler alone, or when our children made decisions that were heart breaking, when my dad died and years later when my mom passed. Life altering events that would bring tears to any human being. But this was different.
This was just inner sadness that covered me until I finally let the tears of anger and tears of frustration go, and then a long night of sleep. Extra hours of sleep that allowed me to awaken stronger. So far yesterday ,was one of the rough days for me. My coping skills were diminished, and I wasn’t feeling well, a small stomach thing that seemed to become more irritated by the news. Constant e-mail from stores I frequent and restaurants, churches, city news, county news my neighborhood news, my support group, my professional group and friends, co-workers and others communicating what they were doing in regard to handing this new situation we all found ourselves living through … even if I wanted to escape it, communications about it were every place that I turned.
I was reluctant to just cry but the truth is that was what I needed most, I needed to grieve the loss of all that was normal and try somehow some way to accept what is right here and right now.
“This is the day which the Lord has brought about; we will rejoice and be glad in it.” PSALM 118:24
One of the most important lessons in life is to enjoy every day of our lives as we look forward to the future. Tomorrow is the first day of spring, certainly something to look forward to and I can already see the signs of spring with the blooming of trees and the daffodils pressing through the earth.
Maybe this is the time for a good cry and grief and a time for a reset with Easter being just around the corner. Perhaps we are supposed to remember not to take things for granted. A literal cleaning and disinfectant might just be really healthy in all areas of our lives.
I know that just like the way the rain cleanses the earth, my good cry and those tears helped me to shed my grief, my upset and disappointment. As I finish writing this Country Music Artist Gary Allan’s Every Storm Runs Out of Rain comes on the radio, reminding me that this shall pass and the sun will return and shine even brighter after that healthy good cry!
So here is my short list on what I plan to do during “social distancing” where we are encouraged to stay home.
1) Deep clean my entire house
2) Sort through the closets and give to the needy
3) Clean out my office
4) Communicate more sincerely and with much love
5) Sketch out the garden
6) Prepare the garden for more plantings
7) Open the pool earlier, it’s just prettier open
8) Read more
9) Write more
10) Make food from scratch
11) Paint a room
12) Tackle a home improvement project with my husband (the deck)
13) Work more from home where/when I can
14) Retreat …
15) Self-reflection time
16) Personal care
17) Q & A like what does my best life look like now/today?
Cheers! And remember we are ALL in this together … life is for the living, live it!
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