Thursday, October 27, 2011

Just Let Me Cry

Let me be real here for a second. Not that I haven't been in the past. I just feel like I get a lot of "wow, you're handling this so well" or "you have a great attitude", etc. comments and I would have to agree, 90% of the time. I just want people to see or understand the other 10%. And if I'm being really honest, when Dylan was first born, those percentages may have been switched...10% of the time handling it well and 90% of the time a complete mess. :)

During the first few months after Dylan was born, during the time when we were trying to come to terms with what this all meant, whenever someone found out Dylan's story, there were many who would say something to the effect of "it could be worse". I know they were trying to comfort us, and I appreciate it now. And I truly do know, and I knew then as well, that it really could be worse. However, at that time, it felt like they were trying to brush it off as no big deal. And to me, it was a big deal. A really big deal. I didn't feel like my world or my family's world was ending, I didn't feel like Dylan's world was ending. I KNEW everything would be okay, I had faith in that. But that didn't change the fact that it still hurt. It hurt to think about how this would affect Dylan's life. It hurt to think about the pain this would cause him, both physically and emotionally. No parent wants to know that their child is going to suffer in their life. It hurt. It made me cry, a lot. There were days when I would be totally fine. And then there were days when it consumed my every thought. I would watch Dylan going about being the super happy baby that he is and the only thing I could think about was his future. His somewhat unknown future. And I would cry. I would hear those people in my head telling me it could be worse. And I wanted to scream out that I KNEW it could be worse, but that didn't make THIS pain go away any quicker. I felt like I wasn't supposed to be crying about it because it really could be worse and how selfish of me to think that our situation was bad when there were families losing their babies. Families that didn't get to take their babies home and enjoy their smiles and coos. There was this internal battle I was having with myself. The one half of me wanted to just cry because it hurt and the other half of me was urging myself not to because I felt weak and selfish.

My husband kept reminding me that it's all relative. Yes, it could be worse, but this is still hard for US. We haven't had to experience the loss of a child or having a child with more severe disabilities or health problems, but that doesn't mean that what we were experiencing wasn't hard. He said it was okay to cry. And I eventually gave myself permission to cry too, without feeling like a failure.

Eventually the tears slowed down. It was easier to talk about it, think about it, and handle it. But I still had a day here and there where I just needed to cry a good cry, to release all the emotions that I was feeling, and then move on. I still have those days. They seem to come in waves. I'll go weeks without crying about it and then we'll go to the doctors and all of a sudden it's a huge reality check and this all is really happening and guess what...it's hard...and I cry.

Hilary Weeks is one of my favorite Christian singers and she has this beautiful song called Just Let Me Cry. In explaining the story of why she wrote this song, she said, "Crying is part of healing. It is a necessary step in the process. It doesn’t mean we don’t have hope or faith. It doesn’t mean that we don’t believe in the Atonement or the Savior’s ability to heal us. It is simply part of the journey back to joy."

So yes....I cry. But it's okay.

I thank Heavenly Father every day for how healthy Dylan is, because I do truly know it could be worse, and we are so blessed that this is all that it is. I thank Him every day for how happy Dylan is. I thank Him every day for the little "fighter" personality Dylan was born with. I know that will make his life easier. I thank Him for the knowledge that we are only tested as much as we can handle and that somehow we (Dylan and all of us) will be able to handle this, even if it seems hard now or at times. I thank Him for the very real knowledge and faith that this WILL be okay. I thank Him for the comfort and peace that he has brought me. I thank Him for the beautiful boys I have been blessed with. I thank Him for his trust in giving me these children and letting me be their mommy. I thank Him for being an understanding, loving Heavenly Father...even when I cry. No, especially when I cry.

I know this probably won't be the hardest thing we will have to face in our life. But right now, it's hard and it's okay to cry about it.

I hope that if you're reading this and if you are going through a hard time, no matter how insignificant it might seem to others (or you might think it seems to others), I hope you know that it's okay to cry. Keep your head up, keep your faith up, but don't be afraid to let the tears flow...and then continue on. We all face challenging times, all in varying degrees. People tell me all the time how they couldn't imagine going through what we are going through and I can't imagine going through what others are going through.

So am I handling it well? Do I have a great attitude? I would like to believe so. But am I human? Yes. And I don't want people thinking that I'm not and that they need to not be either.




Here are the lyrics to Just Let Me Cry...I love them.

Just Let Me Cry

By: Hilary Weeks


I believe that everything happens for a reason

We’re not just tossed by the wind and left in the hands of fate

But sometimes life sends a storm that’s unexpected

And we’re forced to face our deepest pain.


And when I feel the heartache begin to pull me under

I dig my heels in deep and I fight to keep my ground

Still at times the hurt inside grows stronger

And there’s nothing I can do but let it out


So just let me cry

I know it’s hard to see

But the pain I feel isn’t going away today

So just let me cry

‘Til every tear has fallen

Don’t ask when and don’t ask why

Just let me cry


When I agreed that God could put this heart inside me

I understood that there would be a chance that it would break

But I know he knows exactly how I’m feeling

And I know in time he’ll take the pain away


But for now just let me cry

I know it’s hard to see

But the pain I feel isn’t going away today

So just let me cry

‘Til every tear has fallen

Don’t ask when and don’t ask why

Just let me cry


I have felt joy, the kind that makes my heart want to sing

And so my tears are not a surrender, I’ll feel that way again

But for now, for this moment


Just let me cry

I know it’s hard to see

But the pain I feel isn’t going away today

Just let me cry

Until every tear has fallen

Don’t ask when and don’t ask why

Just let me cry


I believe that everything happens for a reason


12 comments:

  1. Love it! I still am surprised at how quickly the tears come when I'm in the doctors office or talking about Anna to someone. Usually I'm totally fine but then it comes out of nowhere! ha!

    You're right, things could be worse. They could ALWAYS be worse. As a counselor, I remember learning that talking about how it could be worse was one of the worst things you could do when someone is struggling with something difficult in their lives. I think God's heart is to care about what grieves us, even if it's miniscule in comparison to other's suffering. After all, he counts all of our tears...

    Love you friend!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Of course then I realize I have done the "it could be worse" thing a bunch of times on our phone convos... ha.... I guess it's something I'm telling myself, but don't want other people to tell me! :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh, I'm so sorry. I, too, experienced those comments. I had one person tell me "It's just a foot....". It did seem like others wanted to just move past the pain and pretend like everything was back to normal. But, I quickly came to realize that I was grieving for my little girl. I was grieving for her "loss." And that is okay. Grief is something we must work through....grief is something God truly understands. While I had no doubt that our Savior was faithful, sovereign, and gracious during that time, He allowed me to grieve and He understood. It's okay to grieve, my friend. I'm seeing now that my Hannah goes through moments (as she's trying to comprehend her differences) that she needs time to grieve. She needs time to process. I can't pretend I have all the answers. Just as I don't want others to shrug off my grief and pain, I don't want to shrug off her grief and pain. Hang in there, my friend. Yes, it's right and fitting to cry. :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Katie- I'm crying too. How beautiful and heartfelt this post is. I don't think I could ever put my emotions or feelings down the way you have. It must be a gift you have- because your post is truly inspirational to everyone who reads it. I agree with what Tara wrote - I think what you're going through will help you know how to let Dylan grieve if there are ever moments in the future that he needs time to process. You are such a wonderful mother and I'm amazed by you!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I'm glad to have found your blog and will certainly pray for your family. My son Ethan also lives with fibular hemimelia and as of June, an external fixator. Check out our blog. www.ethanfgodschild.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  6. Katie,
    A truly wonderful blog. Your son has touched so many hearts. We surely do love all those "little ones". We will be praying and fasting for Dylan and your family. May Heavenly Father bless you and Dylan with the best possible outcome and His comfort as only He can give. You are a terrific family.

    Hugs,
    Jill

    ReplyDelete
  7. I'm crying...

    You are so right, Katie... with everything that you said. You are amazing... because you are real. And you have so much faith. What a lucky (well, and definitely blessed) little guy you have.

    Love this blog... I'll be checking back often. Again, you're all in my prayers.

    ~Summer Kellogg

    ReplyDelete
  8. This is an incredibly beautiful song, and does a really good job of summing up how I'm feeling right now. Our little girl was born on 10.10, and was diagnosed with FH on Tuesday. (here's where I have to admit that I've only read one or two of your posts, so I don't know how Dylan's story unfolds...my next sentence could be completely off...) Unlike your little fella, she doesn't have a functioning foot and the doctor's initial recommendation is to think about amputation in the next year. I've spent the last couple of days going between "it'll be fine and could be worse (ha)" to absolutely inconsolable fits of sobbing. My heart just aches for my little girl and the tough times and decisions we have in the coming year(s). I'm going to download this song and play it whenever I need a reminder that a good cry is okay.

    ReplyDelete
  9. After seven years of infertility, we were blessed with Liam. Just short of turning three months old, he passed away in his sleep (SIDS). I feel exactly as this song describes every, single day. I don't think pain is comparable. Everyone is so different, and their struggles are uniquely their own. I believe in being optimistic, so "it could be worse" helps... but it's also okay to allow yourself to feel and to cry. It would be unhealthy not to.

    ReplyDelete
  10. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Exactly.

    Elder Uchtdorf's Conference Address, Grateful in Any Circumstances (april 14), made me ask myself if I was grateful or ungrateful through a particularly challenging experience. I've determined I was grateful. Now, I wasn't jumping up and down for such an experience. However, through the beginning of Elder Uchtdorf's talk I was thinking just that and then he validated my thoughts with, "Being grateful in times of distress does not mean that we are pleased with our circumstances. It does mean that through the eyes of faith we look beyond our present-day challenges."

    I certainly was not pleased! And even now, to say that I was grateful through those circumstances, seems a bit odd. My heart was not overflowing with joy and singing praises. My heart ached. My situation could have been minimized with comments such as "it could be worse" "many people have harder circumstances", but for me, it felt like a death. As Elder Uchtdorf even mentions, "Often their grief is caused by what seems to them as an ending." I was grieving and I certainly wasn't smiling through it. But I was able to "look beyond" because faith that the Lord would sustain me and one day I could look back on this challenge and not feel the grief with such intensity.

    And, to quote Nephi, "I did not murmur against the Lord because of mine afflictions." Grief and complaint are different. Grief is okay and necessary to heal.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The link for his talk: https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/04/grateful-in-any-circumstances?lang=eng

      Delete