Friday, July 31, 2015

Paying Attention (what makes me cry)

My friend Emily reminds us to pay attention to what makes us cry. For some reason, I've caught myself thinking about this more than usual, in recent weeks.

I'm really not much of a crier. But apparently, it's still something I like talking about because I think I've given that disclaimer on my blog about eighty-six times now.

I cry over the normal things, like weddings (duh) and anytime someone says something particularly kind about one of my kids. I also tend to cry over poignant displays of patriotism, kids who aren't loved well, injustice, swelling choral groups, sometimes symphonies, and bikers.

A couple of weeks ago, while at the (in)courage retreat, I was in the middle of a pretty ordinary conversation and cried twice in the span of twenty minutes, over two distinctly different things. It got my attention.

The first tear-jerker was a Misty Copeland commercial. I'd seen it at some point but had forgotten about it. Yada yada, instant boo-hooing.

It breaks me to think about a thirteen year old being told her body is "all wrong". It stuns me to think of the strength and resilience it took that young girl to get from there to where she is now. I think of my daughter, muscled-out since the age of three, with strong thighs and a booty I haaaave to stop smacking and grabbing. (I will. I will stop. She's getting too old. I'm done. But it's just the best thing ever.) I think of the ways she's built differently than her friends, already. I think of the ways I want her to not give a single rip about it. I think of me, my entire life, being skinny-shamed in order to make everyone else feel better about themselves, and the damage that did. I wish I'd had more voices telling me I was perfect. I wish the same for you.

(Did you cry? I need to know. We'll call it "research".)

After we were off Misty and a different collection of women had gathered, conversation veered briefly toward friendship. Instant tears, again.

I'm not entirely sure what to make of that one, but there's something special about being truly known by someone. Friendship between women can be a thing of pure beauty. Maybe you're in a time where that's lacking in your life or maybe you're fulfilled. Both positions are hanky-worthy if you ask me.

My emotions are walking an extremely thin line this week as evidenced by a few moderate melt-downs. Today I wanted to cry but couldn't (full disclosure: I thought my kids deserved a quick guilt trip, but God thought otherwise) then burst into tears an hour later because I tried to schedule a counseling session for one of my people and they turned me down. (Long story. Sob.)

(It's my party and I'll cry if I want to?)

Welcome to a day in the life of Me, where anything slightly out of the ordinary is obsessed over until the next new thing comes along. It's a sickness, but where would a writer be without the gift of extreme self-rumination?

The stress level is building over here and it can only climb so long.
I'm paying attention to my body and the weird ways I'm (not) dealing. It's time to start thinking about some good ways to burn off steam. (Stay tuned!)

For now, jump into my pity party.
Are you a crier? What makes you weepy?

Cry Me A River,