Crying In The Middle Of JCPenney | Family and Chronic Illness

Crying emotion

“Crying Emotiguy” by farconville

You read that right. I don’t want to give you the impression that I was uncontrollably sobbing, but I did have to take my glasses off and wipe tears.

I was accompanied by my future mother-in-law and we were wandering between men’s big & tall and the guys department.

Combing over the sale rack I was overcome with a spirit of thankfulness. I glanced at my future mother-in-law and blurted out…

“Thank you for everything you have done for me.”

Next thing you know the tears were flowing. We quickly embraced and began to walk it out!

Let me tell you, I wasn’t expecting that!

I have had a few days to reflect on why those emotions surfaced. I have come to the following conclusions.

Unfortunelty, when you are living with an invisible chronic illness you often find yourself trying to convince others that you are suffering from a real condition that they can’t physically see.

I try to be as authentic with people as I can, but certain individuals don’t completely embrace my story as believable.

8 years into this condition I am learning to be OK with the idea that some people can’t be convinced.

I am less tolerant when it comes to members of the medical community. Certain doctors and “specialist” I have encountered have taken the position that credibility comes in the form of blood work, CT’s and MRI’s. If everything comes out “normal” your credibility is shot.

Then comes the patronizing phrasing…

“Are you more stressed than usual?”
“Is everything OK at home?”
“Have you considered seeing someone in mental health?”

You know something is TERRIBLY wrong, but the person you believed had the power to fix it has thrown in the towel. They have closed off the idea of possibility and you are disregarded.

Thank GOD not all medical professionals are cut from the same cloth.

Which takes me back to why I got emotional in the middle of JCPenney.

I really should have said to her …

“Thank you for believing me! Thank you for not dismissing me or second guessing me. Thank you for making adjustments to my situation.”

I can count on seeing three people on a daily basis. THREE! One of those individuals is my future mother-in-law.

She believes me! She doesn’t question me. She knows who I was before and who I am now. She didn’t discard me or question me, and that is why I cried in the middle of JCPenney.

If you are being dismissed or ignored, hang in. There will be a person that comes into your circle that doesn’t need to be convinced. They will embrace, believe, and accept. Just promise yourself that when that person presents himself or herself you won’t take them for granted!

Much love,


  1. Marissa, I hear the same story from so many people with Dystonia. Though they have visible symptoms, there’s no confirming test and a number of doctors dismiss their condition as “in their head.” Which, ironically, it actually is, though not quite the way these doctors mean! The medical community needs to recalibrate their approach to illness to accommodate conditions that are presently unknowable. In my struggles with my hypersensitivities I get plenty of odd reactions even from my own family and I’m well aware how “crazy” my symptoms sound. But sometimes “crazy” and “strange” are also “real.” You know I support you, believe in you and believe you! -Pam-

    • “The medical community needs to recalibrate their approach to illness”

      LOVE THIS! Recalibrate is the perfect choice of words.

      Thank you Pam for always having my back.

      Much love,

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