Beans & Rice for the Soul

teaching, learning and living around the world

Crying and leaning on: it’s okay to not be okay

I love my fate to the very core and rind.
But that doesn’t mean it’s always easy or that I’m always so optimistic.

I had a great email exchange with two old friends recently about the things we find ourselves crying over.  I found it so reassuring to know that even my strong, smart, tough girlfriends also feel down sometimes.

I just want to put it out there…
I get overwhelmed and I cry!
I get confused and unsure and have doubts about this or that and I cry!
I get disappointed and I cry!

Anga will be the first to tell you.
I’m a crier.

I try to stay positive on this blog, which I think can be misleading.
I am generally a positive person, but not 100% of the time!

So I just want to reinforce this great message:

Screen Shot 2015-05-09 at 6.25.57 PM

We talk a good game about leaning in but I think middle-upper class Americans are especially bad at leaning ON.  Myself included.

THE DEPENDENCY LEAP: Many people give away the book “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!” as a graduation gift. This book suggests that life is an autonomous journey. We master certain skills and experience adventures and certain challenges on our way to individual success. This individualist worldview suggests that character is this little iron figure of willpower inside.  -The Moral Bucket List

So there’s that.  And now check out this Nigerian 3rd grade social studies textbook:

Screen Shot 2015-05-09 at 6.39.39 PM

Embracing dependency is point number one!  I love that.

It’s okay to give AND RECEIVE help.
It’s okay to give AND RECEIVE protection.

It’s not even that it’s okay, it’s necessary.
There is no shame in asking for help.
No shame in leaning on others.

The Moral Bucket List goes on:

People on the road to character understand that no person can achieve self-mastery on his or her own. Individual will, reason and compassion are not strong enough to consistently defeat selfishness, pride and self-deception. We all need redemptive assistance from outside.

People on this road see life as a process of commitment making. Character is defined by how deeply rooted you are. Have you developed deep connections that hold you up in times of challenge and push you toward the good? In the realm of the intellect, a person of character has achieved a settled philosophy about fundamental things. In the realm of emotion, she is embedded in a web of unconditional loves.

Mm! Love that last line.
Embedded in a web of unconditional loves.
That’s exactly what I have.
And exactly what I want to keep.
My web of unconditional loves.

Part of what makes relationships run deep
Is being honest when we’re not okay.

It’s okay to not be okay.
Just tap into that web of unconditional loves
and lean on.


One comment on “Crying and leaning on: it’s okay to not be okay

  1. Sally
    May 10, 2015

    Sounds normal to me. Crying has been clinically shown to lower stress and elevate mood. Sort of a self medication. It’s exists to be used, altho I have known people who take medications instead! Crying also removes toxins, kills bacteria and helps us see!! Haha – it’s a very natural human function that sometimes gets taken for granted and even shamed, which is a shame ;-). In babies and little kids, it’s an important way for them to communicate things.

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This entry was posted on May 9, 2015 by in books, humanities, inspiration, life.
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