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It was bedtime the day after Thanksgiving when my daughter came to me crying.
I looked for signs of blood or injury, but there was none. I asked what’s wrong? She said I don’t know. I’m just sad.
My thoughts raced in panic. My wife and the rest of the family aren’t home. Injuries, I can handle – I can get to the ER in record time! But 9-year-old-girl sadness – there’s no guidebook on how to handle this. Do the guys at 1-800-DADHELP work on the holiday weekend? Perhaps Google has the answer? ”You can handle this,” I told myself.
I held her for a while and then sent her off to get dressed for bed. I thought the distraction of a book would help, so I suggested she read. In an hour she seemed herself again. I tucked her in, and she went right to sleep.
The next morning I asked her if she was feeling better. My daughter said, ”Yes, I don’t know why I was sad. I just needed to cry.”
When someone is crying, we are conditioned to think, I wonder what’s wrong. Crying is one of our body’s release valves. Anxiety, tension, and hurt feelings are dampened through our eye’s salty leakage. For some, this release is as frequent as the April rain and easily summoned by a sentimental song or story. For others, it may rain in the desert more than tears hit our face. Regardless of our personal climate, my daughter’s prescription for what ails us is a good cry.
I didn’t have to give the the well-worn “Life’s Not Fair” Dad-speech. No band-aid was required either. She just needed to cry.
Thanks for all you do.
Submitted by Anthony Romanello.