I had my daughter in August, and my sister’s son was due in December. My sister ended up being in her third trimester when I was returning to work from maternity leave. When I got off work one day I saw a text from her saying she was tired and worn out and ready to have her baby. Anyone who has experienced a third trimester knows God makes it so tiring and uncomfortable that you are actually READY to go into labor.
So there I was recently back to work, doing night feedings, with my post pregnancy hormones still out of whack and an hour commute ahead of me. I dialed her number having the very best of intentions to give my sister a “YOU GOT THIS GIRL!” pep talk. I got her voicemail though.
I proceeded to tell her voicemail that every minute her son was inside her, he was growing and getting stronger. All of the aches and sleeplessness would soon be worth it when she was holding her healthy baby in her arms. Then a combination of me having so much empathy for how she felt and how tired I was kicked in. I started to cry and told her she was a great mom. I started to cry harder and told her she could do this. I started sobbing uncontrollably, and incoherent words of encouragement spewed out me until I hung up without saying goodbye because she wouldn’t be able to understand it anyway.
I pulled over until I was able to get control of myself. I texted my sister and told her she should probably delete my message before listening to it. She did listen to it. All she said was it was sweet. Really though I think she didn’t dwell on it or say more because it didn’t make her feel any better. Also I think she wanted to avoid her crazy, imbalanced sister from turning into the same puddle of mess that left her the voicemail with the worst pep talk ever.
Now you probably already know that when trying to make someone feel better you shouldn’t ugly cry. But JUST in case you need that confirmed I am here to tell you that no, ugly cries have no place in pep talks.