Sad little stuff
I’ve written a lot about tears and crying. Like a lot of other people in tune with their emotional intelligence(s), I like the idea of crying. I have always found immense comfort in the act of ‘letting it out’. Of course, it goes without saying that there are many different types of tears and not all of them aim at bringing the weeper peace or clarity.
My favourite type, however, is the kind of tears that come when I’m sad for myself and it’s sincere. It doesn’t take anyone too long to figure out that I am mentally unwell. I’ve lived with severe depression for years now, and have recently picked up the upgrades and value-added symptoms that come with high-functioning depression. Crying, weeping and shedding a few tears come with the territory and the territory is all mine. I cry a lot.
I just wanted to say here that today I realised something else about how I feel about my crying. I was making tea, standing at the stove, and thinking. My sister-in-law came into the kitchen just then. She’s the only person I am talking to right now, because my brother and my mother have finally crossed over to the point where I can no longer let them dictate my moods and walk all over me. (This, for another time)
I was completely lost in my thoughts and something sad just came right up in my head. I was about to tear up. My SIL was almost behind me (she was moving, though, not standing behind me like a murderer) and I suddenly had the immediate feeling that I should swallow my tears. And as soon as I thought that, I felt sad all over again. Why? Because to me, the act of not letting my emotional reaction play itself out, no matter how small, no matter how inconsequential, was an act of betrayal. No one, and I mean not one person, is more important to me than myself. The world hasn’t given me anyone who stands on higher ground than I do. Those who did are all dead. They are already higher up and they get to be there, while I have to live this life for however long.
This does not mean that I will now starting bawling my eyes out at the first hint of sadness (or whatever my trigger may be). Most people in this world don’t deserve to see me cry. That’s an intimacy I am not willing to allow them access to. And, well, I suppose that is the reason why I choose to suppress the welled-up choke of tears if I feel them in a hostile or uncomfortable space. My tears are just that. Mine.