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Life advice #11: It’s okay to let your children see you cry.

31 March 2013 by Amy Hansford

Life advice from a 90 year old? I’ll take it.
Backstory blog can be found here.

cry11. It’s okay to let your children see you cry.

My mum and dad were chalk and cheese. My mum was bold, matter of fact, a superhero. She got on with things. She pulled my hair when she brushed it but she got the job done. My dad was and still is sensitive, a bit of a faff and also a superhero. He did the ‘fun’ stuff. He would spend a hour doing my hair, never pulling. Took a while.

The day my grandad died was the first time I saw my mum cry. Nothing had ever got to her before. Of course she’d cried about things in the past, only silently and secretly, away from her children. But it wasn’t until that day that I appreciated that she could cry, and that meant it became more of a normal thing to do. The acknowledgement that sometimes you feel so sad that it all bursts out. And that’s okay.

Little L is now two and has probably seen me a bit upset a couple of times. I can set myself off easily – just a glimpse at an old photo leads me to say “That’s Granny Annie. She would have loved you” and I’m off. That kind of face-looks-a-bit-crumpled-and-red-and-eyes-are-watering-a-bit off. I don’t mind this. a) I can’t help it and b) I guess it shows her that it’s okay to be sad sometimes, as long as you know you get to be happy again later.

So I’m okay with this. I don’t need to appear to be an untouchable superhero. Just a loving and accepting one.

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