I read somewhere once to “pay attention to your tears.”

It’s a simple discipline that I do try and practice.

When the goose bumps come and the tears start to gather quietly.

I just take note.

Thus. Things that are making me cry these days:

1. I should of never opened that old photo box.

And this one is pretty easy to explain…

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2. During one of our parent-teacher conferences, one of the teachers said,

“One thing about Child X is that he has a really deep understanding of God’s love for him. And that produces some freedom for him.”

Ha. We get it.

We understood that it was a bit of a critique disguised as a compliment. It could of been said like, “He doesn’t seem to be overly concerned about following all the rules.”

We know this child. And we agree.

We all laughed.

I turned to Andy and said, “Well, I guess, if there is anything I want our kids to know. It’s that.”

We smiled.

And then on the way home, I cried.

I cried. Because that is actually so, so huge. This is so much bigger than behavior modification and control.

And for a family that gets so many things wrong, I really hope we get this one right.

God is crazy about you.

He is for you.

He loves you.

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3. I picked up Zeke from tutoring and was taking him to school. I looked at him in the rearview mirror and said, “Zeke. I’m really proud of you for working so hard on your reading. You are doing a really good job.”

And he said, “Thanks, Mom. You too.”

Um. Sweetest. Boy. Ever.

And I cried.

Not because my own reading proficiency is actually improving too, but because my son—my son who can’t even seem to get himself on the reading chart to be in the red zone— had read me.

He had read the emotions. He had read my body language. He was paying attention to the stress that I was feeling after the last round of parent-teacher conferences. He noticed how hard I was working. He was reading the dynamics. He was reading me.

He is mastering empathy.

And all of a sudden, that became an indicator of success far more important than how many words he can read in an minute.

——

And at the very same time. This. I cried every time I read this today. Which was about 17 times.

“People who don’t give up on slow or challenged students will get the best seats in heaven. I don’t know a lot, but I know this to be true.



To me, teaching is a holy calling, especially with students less likely to succeed. It’s the gift not only of not giving up on people, but of even figuring out where to begin.



You start wherever you can. You see a great need, so you thread a needle, you tie a knot in your thread. You find one place in the cloth through which to take one stitch, one simple stitch, nothing fancy, just one that’s strong and true. The knot will anchor your thread. Once that’s done, you take one more stitch–teach someone the alphabet, no matter how long it takes, and then how to read Dr. Suess, and Charlotte’s Web, and A Wrinkle in Time, and then, while you’re at it, how to get a GED. Empathy is meaning.” (Lamott)

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4. Now. Don’t judge me. This one is a little weird.

You may of seen this video making the rounds. It’s of a couple who practiced and performed the dance from the movie, Dirty Dancing, at their wedding reception.

It’s so cute. So fun.

And I sobbed.

I have no idea why.

But I’m exploring it.

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So there you have it.

It has been an overwhelming week…which happens about once a month…and there are some big changes on the horizon…and I don’t love change….and it’s a crazy, busy time of year which always adds a bit of tension.

But regardless..I’m paying attention.

10 Responses to Random Things Making Me Cry Lately.

  1. Ashley says:

    Aw Jody. I love this. This is why I love reading your thoughts and words. You are honest and true. And you’re getting it right with your kids. I’m paying attention. Also, I’ll pray for you this week as you come to mind, with whatever the details of all the change that’s coming might be. XO

  2. Lesli Yeager says:

    Not sure why?..but now- I’m crying…I thought, this was suppose to be about YOU crying.
    I can’t tell you enough..How much I LOVE your honesty and how genuine and real you are. You inspire me.
    I especially, LOVED what you wrote about Zeke.

    U ARE A BEAUTIFUL PERSON.

  3. Tammi says:

    Love your writing.

  4. Stacy Edwards says:

    Im glad i stumbled upon this today. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Gina says:

    I love that you pay attention to your tears. I stopped crying for so many years and then after starting the adoption process and falling in love with a photo of my son it’s like he brought my ability to cry back. I joke that he ruined me 😉 but I think the opposite is probably more accurate. Tears are so uncomfortable for me but I am going to start paying attention to them. Thanks for this.

  6. Amber Bradley says:

    Thank-You Thank-You Thank-You!!!! At a time when I struggle the most every year, thank-you for letting me know I am not alone!!! I am getting married next week and I am nervous and scared and overjoyed and a million other emotions. He is my bestfriend and we are finally making our family whole. After the wedding begins the process of adoption as the little girl he has known as his daughter for 9 yrs will finally officially be leagally his. 🙂 Big Stuff happening!!! And then comes the neverending emotions that come with the holidays and I go throught this grief process EVERY year. It has been 10 years since I lost my brother but it NEVER gets any easier and just when I think I can’t cry anymore it comes out even harder. I miss him alot and I find myself walking through the stores seeing other make their christmas purchases and begining the decorating process and I get angry and mad and think why me why my family why do we have to enjoy life with out him……and I cry. So you see, I appreciate you opening your heart and your life and expose your most intimate details as they do help and knowing that there are others who know pain and stuggle and heartache as well and i’m not alone and I can find hope and knowing that I can survie and grow and faith. Thanks Again for sharing your journey Jody, I greatly appreciate it!!
    Best Regards,
    Amber

  7. ruthie says:

    Well, Ms. Jody, I LOVE this post!

    And I have never heard the saying “pay attention to your tears”, but it’s so true!

    Thanks for an awesome start to the day.

  8. deborah says:

    you are a great mom. love you. aunt D

  9. trina goodwin says:

    Jody, I too struggled in school, my two children had problems too, not a good speller and not a good reader, one week ago my daughter calls me late and says mom I can’t remember did you ever read to me, I tensed due to ashame due to not knowing what to tell her not wanting her to know I was afraid to read to her due to me giving her wrong words. she is a wonderful reader due to me getting her a tutor to help my two kids. so I told her why, I feel like a failed mother who worked two jobs to give my children help, thanks for sharing this it something I don’t share with anyone. I love that god helped you with our challenges in our life and I do cry a lot. so proud of you and love your site. god bless.

  10. maria c. little says:

    so glad I checked in after a long absence – this post is just, well “real”

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