Crying is a luxury

I started crying this weekend while sorting through baby clothes that my daughter has recently outgrown.

She’s just about to turn six months old, so all the sweet little things that I bought before she was born are now too small. So I need to get rid of them to make room for new things. But I loved the old things and chose them before I actually had a baby daughter, and the thought that they are now too small makes me sad. Now I’m crying again just thinking about it.

But before you feel too sorry for me, I’d be remiss if I didn’t put the whole crying jag in context:

My gorgeous, healthy, growing daughter was sitting in my lap. We were in her beautifully decorated bedroom, in our lovely home, with a wonderful supportive husband on his way home.

So I have NOTHING TO CRY ABOUT! I am very lucky and I know that, and I am very grateful.

So why am I crying?

My husband says: focus on moving forward, on all the good things to come.

Yes, I do look forward to her first words, first steps, to dancing with her one day at her wedding…

Oops, there I go again. Blubber blubber blubber. I’m going to have to put a box of Kleenex on my desk!

So clearly I’m planning to cry at my desk again.

That makes me think of an article I read once about grief and the process of grieving. The author had lost her father, and was frustrated that her grief spilled out at inappropriate times. Like while writing a check at the grocery store. Her advice was to “schedule” your time to grieve. Given that your body would grieve, and that it would most likely show that grief, she advised setting aside a quiet time each day to let it out.

My mother agrees. She says: “Go ahead and cry. Holding it in will only give you wrinkles!”

Again, I have no reason to cry. I am so fortunate and blessed. I am not grieving the loss of a loved one. I’m crying over pink ruffly things. But it’s still grief. And lucky me, I am in a position to let it out.

Which brings me to my ultimate conclusion: crying is a luxury. And right now it’s a luxury that I am in a position to enjoy.

How many times in my life did I tell my self to “suck it up”, staying stoic through athletic injuries, career frustrations and emotional heartbreak.

But no more! I am now safe and secure and loved. And so so so lucky. So here I go again, crying like the baby that I am so grateful to finally have.

It’s a luxury that I am finally, at long last, in a position to enjoy. And I’m going to, dammit.

Pass the Kleenex.

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5 Responses to “Crying is a luxury”

  1. Crying isn’t only healthy for the changes inherent with the growth of a child. I have a 9 month-old grandson who is also growing like a weed. After 4 1/2 years post lung-transplant his grandmother and my wife of 38 years succumbed to an aggressive lung infection last month. Her friends and our family went through her things and distributed special items internally before donating much to various charities. Many tears and hugs but mostly reflections on a life well lived. James, her grandson, was the proverbial apple of her eye during his lifetime and her final months. Thanks for sharing this post.

  2. Been there too! We are lucky that we have such blessings that can make us cry.

  3. Corinna, I literally just posted this about 4 minutes ago.. cry girl… have at it!

    BENEFITS OF A MELTDOWN
    October 22, 2012 · by jordanagreen · Bookmark the permalink. · Edit
    It happens. At least it happens to me. Complete and utter loss of control of emotions, physicality and rationale. It happened last week.

    I signed my divorce papers. The signing was uneventful. Me, my lawyer, a notary. Done. The build up leading to the signing was worse, I was expecting to be nervous, contrary, have regrets. But no, I signed, got teary eyed and left.

    Then I checked my email. I received an email from my bank saying my overdraft went into effect because my personal account had been overdrawn. I stopped at the bank to clear it up. They pulled up my account and there it was, $0.00 balance. Holy S—. Then I got nervous, contrary, even belligerent. I cried, protested, added up the expenses, and learned it was true $0.00. Wow.

    Ok, so it’s been a tough month. Divorce lawyer fees, a family trip to see my cousin with leukemia, Bruce Springsteen tickets (non-negotiable purchase). But Holy S—.

    When I left the bank, I really lost it. They crying became sobbing, which became hyperventilating. And when I finally made it home safely, I really allowed myself to wallow. (Yes, of course I acknowledge the delayed and misappropriated emotional response here, clearly the overdrawn account was the conduit to release the emotions from my divorce, yes I see it, but stay with me here.)

    I got in the shower, and bawled. I pounded the shower walls, crumpled on the floor, and wept. There were moments of clarity when I told myself to pull it together but I just couldn’t do it. So I stayed right where I was and kept crying… for a long time.

    Oh, it was a good meltdown. Pitiful, violent, dramatic, all the ingredients needed to create the perfect storm for an epic woe-is-me moment.

    It was not pretty, but it was necessary. And you know what, I felt better. Research has shown crying releases harmful stress chemicals in the body. Theory confirmed in my shower.

    For more than a year now all I’ve heard is, “Be strong”, “stay tough”, “work hard”. But sometimes, I’m weak, tired and I break. And that’s ok. I’ve been working so hard at forgiving everyone else that it was time to cut myself some slack.

    Maybe it’s the drama queen in me but I think emotions are meant to be felt fully and heartily because when they’re given an outlet they have their moment and then they pass. Then a new emotion takes it’s place. Do I want to feel the moment my marriage legally ended forever? Do I want to feel poor forever? Hell no. But I’m glad I felt those moments for a while, because they made me realize the next moment was the one when I get to start rebuilding.

    After my Oscar worthy meltdown, I cleaned myself, the shower and felt it was finally time to pull myself together.

    Then I went to look for receipts. The bootstraps I’d like to pull myself up by will have to go back to the store, because clearly I can’t afford them, so last years’ boots will have to do.

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