I saw Jody in church on Sunday. (She is the wife of the couple getting a divorce who I blogged about before). I wanted to wish her a happy new year and see how she was holding up. The separation was her idea and even though she made the decision to end the marriage, it doesn't mean that she made that decision lightly. You can tell that her decision is still hurting her as well as the rest of the family. When I told her that 2012 was gonna be a better year than 2011, her eyes welled up; and with silent tears she said, real quiet "Don't say anything else, or I'll start crying"....to which I replied "Oh, don't cry! God has a plan and everything is gonna work out". I hugged her and walked back to my seat. It didn't dawn on me until the next day that the advice I had given her was incorrect. "Don't cry" is what I had said to her. Don't cry! What an ignorant thing for me to say! Tsk. I am mad at myself for saying that to her. Especially since this past year I have found my own self crying or on the verge of crying over everything. Our tears are God's holy water, they heal us as they flow. Why had I told her not to cry!? No one had told me not to cry.
Here is what I wish I had said to her instead:
It's ok to cry, Jody. And if you need to cry for the grief and the peace and the relief that that decision gave you, why you go ahead and cry then. Cry until you feel healed and whole. Cry until your soul no longer aches. Cry until you no longer feel bruised and lost and alone. And then when you finally feel happy and light and free...go ahead and cry again; the sweet, gentle, cleansing tears of healing and relief; the deeply tranquil tears of peace and thankfulness and gratitude. God's Blessing to you.
The next time I see her in church, I think I will just keep my advice about not crying to myself and hug her instead. Another lesson learned.