Pain, The Beatles, and a Love Note to My Readers

“And when the broken-hearted people living in the world agree, there will be an answer: Let it be.”

In a world of division, so many are seeking that “thing.” That thing that crosses over strong barriers. That thing that can sew together even the most divided of adversaries. That thing that all can relate to, understand- liberals and conservatives, religious and agnostics, eastern and western.

People, scholars, experts, philosophers, have searched for years looking for that thing that can bring some form of common ground among those around the world.

The Beatles, they were not scholars, but I do believe that they found it- that thing. In this simple line, not even the most quoted from this song, they identify and establish, that thing- a broken heart.

We all know the pain of a broken heart.

Do we all know different levels of this pain? Sure, but I think that comparison is why no one can quite get it. It’s why there are no answers- because all of us with our broken hearts can’t agree. We can’t just take broken hearts at base level and mourn for each other in the suffering. We compare and diminish. When the truth, the only thing that matters, is we’re all hurting.

We all know hurt.

Let It Be is my all-time favorite song. And though I tend to be a purist, my favorite rendition of this song actually comes from the movie, Across the Universe.

In this poignant and painful scene, you see a mother receiving the news that her son was killed in Vietnam. The song starts, and we are taken to the inner city violence of the Detroit in the 1960’s, scenes of violence that, despairingly, look desperately close to current scenes of 2020. The video continues going back and forth between these two different, but simultaneously occurring, worlds- the family of the soldier, and the family of a victim to this violence. In both story lines there is loss, there is heartbreak, there is a funeral, and though from the outside it all looks so different- different people, different cultures, different circumstances, different worlds, the underlying emotion is the same.

Pain- deep, throbbing, inescapable pain.

Pain is pain, death is death- and if you can watch this scene and justify that one is worse than the other for any particular reason, I would dare to say that you are part of the problem.

In February I started writing about my pain. Week after week, I came here. I started blogging weekly because it is where I felt I was called to contribute in my million-mile-an-hour life that I truly had no grasp on. I still don’t.

I started writing about pain because that is what is currently so real to me. I never imagined that I would be here. I never imagined that parts of my heart would evolve into what they have become. I never knew my words brewed from my life experience, would ever resonate with anyone else. I simply wrote, and continue to write, the things that I have no more capacity to hold inside of me. I have been so incredibly humbled by the amount of people who read, share, and respond to these explosive words of my temperamental soul.

More than that, I have been deeply moved by the stories you have chosen to share back with me- stories of your own pain. So many of you, who have never even met me, have allowed me a glimpse into the most vulnerable parts of your life, your pain, and I cannot even express what this means to me.

1 Peter 4:13 says, “but rejoice insamuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed.”

Some days this thought is all that gets me through, this idea that the aching in my chest is something that connects me to my maker. It’s something that connects me to my husband as he sits across the table from me with a similarly broken disposition.

It’s something that connects me to our friends and family as we all navigate deep love, pain, and fear in this undesirable circumstance.

It is something that connects me to you.

And in that, I think we begin to find answers.

I’ve learned over the past year that grief is a floodgate, but one that really should be opened more often, despite the ‘keep it bottled’ culture we live in. When you reach that full capacity, and you can’t help but tell the random stranger that you are in pain, it is rarely met with the uncomfortable reaction we expect. Instead, I’ve found that when someone hears about my own pain, they have their own story to tell.

We connect, because pain is universal.

When I told the air conditioning repair man that if possible, I need it done earlier because my husband has stage four cancer, he told me that his wife was just released from a four-month stay in the hospital following a stroke.

Suddenly, two strangers in two different paths of life understood each other. We found answers in pain.

When I told the mattress saleswoman about all that I was looking for in the purchase, and why I needed these specific features in an overpriced bed, she told me about her horrid season of losing her mother to cancer.

Suddenly, two strangers in two different paths of life understood each other. We found answers in pain.

When I sit behind my computer and I tell all of you about the broken parts of me, and you dare to respond with your own stories, something moves. I hear about the things we have in common even worlds away, and I feel a little less alone.

I hope you do as well.

Because as broken-hearted people agree, there will be an answer.

Pain is meant to be felt, and when we feel it, we can connect to others.

Pain is meant to be talked about, because in that we all find common ground.

Pain is meant to be shared, because it is much too heavy to carry alone.

Pain is truly our answer.

It is my hardest, but most fulfilling, honor to enter into Christ’s suffering with so many of you week after week.

Thank you.

8 thoughts on “Pain, The Beatles, and a Love Note to My Readers

  1. In Bible study Philippians we spoke about even through our deepest struggles. We can help others.
    You are such and inspiration and total example of God’s disciple. You are so amazing and I am so glad to have you as my disciple. I know your life is so uncertain as far as expectations. However you are using your struggle to help others who are disappointed with their life.

  2. Thank you Alicia for sharing your heart with us. I’m privileged to follow you on your journey and my husband and I pray for you both all the time. May God bless you and give you strength, mercy, grace, peace, patience, power, encouragement and love.
    Know that you are prayed for and loved.
    ~ Kris & Dean

  3. “What God does in us while we wait is as important as what it is we are waiting for “ ~John Ortberg

    Pain has so many different profiles but the pilgrimage is the same; it causes us to cross paths and pray for each other, purify our souls and know that we are not alone.

    Praying for you daily. You are not alone.

  4. Alycia,
    It is so hard to find any words after your extraordinary blogs. I have never ever read more beautiful but heartbreaking blogs in my life. Your pain… so amazingly written on paper, each time, pulls at my heart strings like no other!
    The pain of my father’s massive heart attack, the unfathomable pain of my dear sister taking her own life, or my mother’s stroke which left her unable to communicate her last ten days of her life, was painful. But what you are experiencing watching Andrew suffer and projecting all of your heartfelt words on paper, causes more pain in my stomach that I can hardly bare. You are so young, he is so young and yet it is so hard to read your heartbreak, which brings me to tears every time. But I can’t even explain this deep love in my soul for you two and the honor I feel as to be blessed enough to read your blogs when Cindy sends them to us, as I would if you were my own!
    I have said prayers for the years of Andrew’s suffering as well as all of the family’s broken hearts through it all. You are such a witness of God’s love, faith and mercy!
    You both will be forever in my heart… continued prayers for this journey you are on and may God bless you and bring you unimaginable love of His presence, even through this pain beyond measure!
    Always prayers and hugs coming you way????🙏🏻🙏🏻❤️❤️

  5. Alycia,
    You have no idea of the impact your writing has on so many people. You know how to put such deep, raw and pure emotion into words so beautifully that it inspires and connects us to you in such a way that even years of close friendship cannot. We are praying and thinking of you, Andrew and the entire family daily. You have a tremendous support team behind you, please lean on them to take some of the burden off of you. It really is too much for one person to carry. Thank you for sharing your wonderful spiritual gift with all of us. We need to read these things more than you can ever know, and you are helping others that are on a similar path in life. Thank you!

  6. Your pain is so real, and yet so approachable. I think of losing my parents, and I never truly mourned them as I needed to be strong and keep it bottled up. I need to change that. I need to experience that pain.
    We’ve never met, and yet you have touched my heart. I’ll never know your strength or pain, as you are going through a hell I can’t even imagine. You have opened my eyes to what a true heroine looks like.

    May God bless you and envelop you in his loving, comforting and healing arms.

  7. I can close my eyes and picture the little Alicia knocking on the door to play with Brooke. You have grown into a beautiful woman. You are wiser than you should be at your age. Honestly, wisdom comes from learning through pain. I don’t know why you’ve had to experience such pain. As a mom, I’m heartbroken. I just want to throw my arms around you. Thank you for sharing your painful wisdom. It helps all of us who read. Faith. Faith gives us a beauty that is designed to heal. You have plenty. Let me know if you need a hug. I’ll come running. Prayers for you.

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