Today I cried.
Ok, so actually I cry easily – most every Sunday during worship, while watching movies, videos or commercials with anything that is the slightest bit touching, as I speak about things I am passionate about, watching a child be born, at baptisms, graduations, weddings & funerals and yes, even when the National Anthem is being played at ballgames. It is true! Ask my kids who are constantly looking over to see if Mom is getting weepy again at any given moment. I probably “tear up” almost daily.
But today was different. Today was one of those heart wrenching, sobbing, deep from within cries that hit me like a brick. I suppose it was a culmination of things – dealing with “tough love” issues with friends that didn’t go so well, facing some hard realities about our upcoming financial changes, being overly tired from a pretty jam-packed schedule of late nights, early mornings and excessive driving, feeling inadequate, under appreciated and unaccepted by people who are important to me and of course hormones that are raging at this moment in life!
I found myself face down on my bed, sobbing into my pillow and feeling crushed under the weight of emotion. It has been a very long time since I have cried with such intensity over my own life. In fact, as I thought about it I can count on one hand the times that I have truly broken down and wept like that:
- The death of my beloved father
- A shocking betrayal by longtime trusted friends
- The end of a dear friends marriage
- My daughter’s diagnosis of Type 1 diabetes
And I am truly grateful that my life has not included some of the tragic events that can bring you to your knees in total all consuming grief. And yet despite not having a specific tragedy in my life, I was grieving something deep in my heart today. After the tears subsided leaving me with very red eyes, a runny nose and puffy face and I was able to spend some time contemplating my emotional state and searching my heart for the reasons behind my inexplicable “cry-out”, I realized that it came down to three things:
- I want to be loved unconditionally – don’t we all? Is not every heart longing to be loved in a deep satisfying way? We look for this love throughout our entire lives. We look for it first in our parents, then from our friends and in that “perfect” relationship with a spouse that is destined to be our soul mate. I don’t want to earn it or deserve it, I just want to be loved. Sacrificial, committed, perfect love.
- I want to be accepted for who I am – the good, the bad and the ugly. I am who I am. Not that I will ever stop trying to be a better person, smooth out my flaws or improve my character. Nor do I want to ever cease growing into the best version of myself. Yet again, I am who I am. I have been given a personality with both strengths and weaknesses. I have been given gifts and talents as well as struggles and challenges. I have done some great things with my life as well as my share of evil and ungodly actions. I want to be accepted just the way I am with all my failings and imperfections.
- I want my needs to be provided for. Now, maybe this is a girl thing, I do not know, but at times I just want to be taken care of. I want to be as free as a child who knows that all of her daily needs will be met by her parents. I want to be provided for not to always work, struggle or contend. I want a caretaker, a personal assistant, a cook, a maid, a masseuse……ok not really my “needs” but you get the idea. To live a life free of striving.
Can anyone else out there relate to these desires? I think you just might. I believe that we all have similar desires in our lives. What surprised me as I analyzed my break down was how deep these desires resonated with me even though I am surrounded by those who love me, accept me and take care of me. How could I feel these needs so deeply when:
- I had parents growing up who showered us with unconditional love and provided for our every need
- I have an abundance of family members who would do most anything for me
- I have always been blessed with deep and meaningful friendships with many people throughout my life
- I have a handful of close friends who are constantly reaching out to provide things to make my life better
- I have simply the most amazing husband ever who loves me through everything and works hard to take care of me
- I have eight children who pour love into my life, accept my imperfections and love to call me their Mom
With all that love and acceptance how could I still have those deep desires?
Is it because God has put the desire in my heart that only He can completely meet? No one else can truly love me with a sacrificial and unconditional love. No one else can really accept me…warts and all….just the way I am. No one else can provide for all of my needs. Only God and God alone can touch the depths of my heart and fill me to overflowing.
I know that.
I have lived that.
I have shared that with others.
But perhaps today I needed to feel the emotions of deeply desiring that love, acceptance and provision so I could allow Him to once again draw me close into His loving arms. Now I just need to stay there!