The Pain and Growth of Tears

The Effect of TearsI wrote this article a while ago (many weeks before today’s date of Sept. 22, 2014), while having an intense experience with myself and my own tears. Though many weeks have passed since then to publishing this article now, and I feel great now, I wanted to actually publish the article as I wrote it in the past so you can read my raw feelings and emotions. I took a snapshot of myself after I cried to show what I look like. This article contains raw feelings, strong language, and my inner layers of my being. It contains some things I say about why this is happening that I don’t completely agree with as I am now far into the future after writing this – but that’s OK. I want to share how I felt at the time as there is much that is true to me in this article.

The pain and growth of tears are what I’m thinking about now. I’m posting a picture of me that looks different than most pictures you’ve seen of me. I just got done crying – a lot. This is something I’ve been doing for the last many months off and on – since about March 1st, 2014. The picture you see of me here is after I wiped away my tears, but still, the after effect can be seen.

You’ll notice that in this picture, I look life-less. My eyes have bags under them – my face’s wrinkles are more pronounced, my face is wet from tears having flooded it. My forehead is sweaty – that was from running earlier in the day actually. My expression is one of intense pain inside. The reasons for the pain are two-fold – the likely splitting up from my wife – a good wife who has cared for me, and the loss of someone else I hold very dear to me. It is the double whammy of this, yet both occurrences are necessary in my life right now.

In some way I don’t comprehend, these two experiences are what I need to go through right now. And I created the circumstances in my life for them to happen this way. Looking back, who I am as a man – how things have unfolded – is the only way they could have for the person I am. And I believe the universe is teaching me a big lesson – a harsh lesson, yet one that is necessary for me to achieve the next level of growth for who I am as a human being. Through all the pain, howling, wailing, and crying, I have to believe that there is a lesson – otherwise, what’s it all for?

Similar times in my life of tears

There’s been other times in my life where I’ve cried – but only once for this long a period of time. I cried when my first girlfriend broke up with me – her father didn’t approve of her dating white guys. I cried when my second girlfriend and I mutually agreed to break up. I cried because my parents didn’t approve of me dating African-American women and wished my parents didn’t have prejudices. I cried for about a month after that as she was my first “real” relationship.

I cried when my 2nd grade teacher ripped up a piece of paper of mine because I was tracing on lines. I cried when my cat Tiger died when I was a child. I cried when I broke my arms as a child – each on separate occasions. I cried when I ruptured the disc in my spine and afterwards had surgery and had to stay in bed for weeks. I cried when I got my kidney stone and could only curl up in a ball and yell and swear in pain. I cried on a road trip from Washington where I had a terrible flu.

The one other time in my life where I cried for a long time – and it was for about a year straight, off and on, was when I went on an LDS mission to Ireland. I had no idea I would cry whatsoever. But the moment I left home and ended up alone in the training center, it started. My twin brother was somewhat close by, so it wasn’t too bad, but still I could feel it – it was the disconnect from my family and home that did it.

When I was in England, my brother and I arrived on the same flight together. However, he was going to stay in England and I saw him and his group leave. For the first time in my entire life, I was truly alone. I went off to one of the benches in the Gatwick airport and I lost it. I cried and cried and the other missionaries in my group didn’t know what to do. I was a complete wreck.

I got on the flight and arrived in Ireland, still a wreck. We had a meeting at a mission house for us new recruits and I remember there was a huge dinner to eat. A huge dinner that I had no desire to eat whatsoever. I think I took two bites of my food, but just stared at my plate. I was homesick like nothing else.

As a missionary, I eventually got to an apartment with my missionary companion, and for the next 10 months or so, I spent every morning crying in the shower. I’d cry when my missionary companion was in the shower. I’d cry whenever I could get alone in a bathroom. I just cried and cried and cried, each and every day, wondering if there was ever going to be an end to it. So far, it has been quite a few months of continuous crying and who knows if this is going to let up anytime soon. I’m going to be moving out on my own and will have to face alone the disconnect.

On about month 10 of my mission, something interesting happened. I had learned to function independently and navigate myself around Ireland. I had learned to listen to people and dialog with them without thinking too much about home. The tears stopped after about 10 months and it was as if my body had finished rewiring itself – evolving – adapting – so that I could function as an independent human being, able to survive and thrive with nobody familiar around him. Though I no longer believe in the LDS church, the mission I went on was very beneficial for me.

The lessons and realizations of my pain and tears

This has been an invaluable lesson to me. It’s helped me get my college degree, hold jobs after college, and now where I’m at, be a manager of people and interact and interface with upper level managers. That experience catapulted me to face my fears and open my mouth and talk to people. It’s helped me take risks and not be afraid to talk to people. It has allowed me to be charismatic and a good listener.

I can truly look back to that experience and the 10 months of crying as a gift in my life – something that has allowed me to become and do more than I could otherwise have. But shit, those 10 months were fucking hard – I thought I was going to die. I wanted to GIVE UP SO BAD and just come home. But I did not give up.

And now I face tears from many months this year that are even more intense than those I had as a young man of 19 and 20 in Ireland. These tears are much more intense. Associated with them are occasional bouts of howling and roaring. Sometimes as I drive to and from work each day, I cry. Sometimes, during lunch, I go run and I cry. Sometimes, during work, I take a few breaks to go walk outside and I cry. It has been like this, this year – at varying intensities. I can feel strength returning as each day comes and goes though!

As a child, I had some things happen I’d rather forget. That’s all water under the bridge now, it’s no big deal as far as me holding anything against anyone goes. But it is a big deal when I look at things I didn’t know about myself this year. Sometimes I take actions that I KNEW WOULD CAUSE ME PAIN. Let me say that again. I take actions that I KNEW WOULD CAUSE ME PAIN.

Why would I create experiences that cause me pain? I believe I’ve found the source for some of this – and it’s my own limiting beliefs and programming about myself from a young man. I don’t blame my situation there for what has happened. But I firmly believe that we are what we grew up with, until we find a way to break through that.

If you grew up in a loving home with two parents who were crazy about each other and you and always encouraged you, you are lucky. Consider it a gift and something to pass down to future generations. For me, this realization tonight that deep down, I don’t feel deserving of success, money, and true deep connective love is like being walloped over the head with a hammer. It’s like discovering this deep dark secret about myself that I never knew I had. I’ve pushed people away because of this – not even realizing why I was doing it until now.

Can I get to a place where I overcome this and wake up each day, smelling the good air and realizing that I deserve millions of dollars if I can create that value? That I deserve a 100% connection with someone who is so fucking crazy about me that they knock my socks off and I do the same to them and it becomes a reality? I cannot achieve this situation right now in my life – it’s impossible with my current belief system. And I believe it’s why all this has unraveled for me, right before my crying eyes.

But I have hope – and I look at what is going on right now as a metamorphosis, similar to my time as a missionary. Maybe the tears happen for 40 months straight, I don’t know. But I know what I want on the other side – and that is all the success I am deserving for the value I provide, and the deepest, most connective love that I’ve ever experienced that blows me away and lasts for all time. I can’t get that right now. I can’t be that for anyone right now.

This is a deep revelation for me – that my next hurdle to overcome in my life is to shatter this damn belief that I don’t deserve the most amazing life for my efforts and for who I am as a man. Because I’m a hard-working, sensitive, amazing, handsome, and loving man. I know my qualities. And I know this shitty limiting belief about myself that I have to push past. And I believe the only way for me to do it now is to feel this pain and be alone with myself – to learn to love myself – by myself – with nobody at all in my life. Then and only then do I believe I can push past this to be the next great version of myself.

I must go through this by myself. I must learn to not just believe the things about me that I say, but to actually integrate that into my entire being. And I can only do that by myself, on a new path. You and I will know when I’ve gotten there. I’ll post a picture or do a video and you’ll just know. Until then, I am flying under cover of darkness – still writing and doing videos, going to work, seeing my kids every other week – but not much else.

As I think about this situation, this video from Eminem resonates with me and where I’m going:

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