Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Nothing’s Wrong.

When I was younger, I hated watching people cry. Sometimes my mom would cry when she got real frustrated with her children’s behavior and all three of us would sit there feeling completely awkward, not knowing what to say. It was probably her best tactic.

I also hated testimony meetings at church and girl’s camp because someone was bound to cry. I knew who the criers were and when they stood up I would get a little tense because I knew what was coming.

For awhile I stayed away from movies that made people cry and music that made people cry. I stuck to the stuff that was void of any kind of sentiment – partly because I thought a lot of the sentimental stuff was phony and manipulated, but also because I didn’t exactly know how to respond. I understood crying if your brother pushed you or you fell off your bike, but if your tears were a result of something touchy-feely, I felt a little helpless.

As I got older sentiment didn’t bother me so much. I started to allow myself to cry more. I didn’t mind books that made me cry or music that made me cry. Maybe you get to a point where you need an outlet of some sort, and if it’s misdirected, so what? I could cry over the stupidest things even though the worst thing that happened to me that day was I got a B on a math test. I will never join the ranks of those people who get up every month for Fast and Testimony meeting and start to cry before they get a word out, but I suppose I became somewhat of a “crier.”

A couple years ago I was home all by myself and I popped in the movie “Once.” When it was over I sat there and cried for a good 10 minutes. Not just tears, SOBS. It was ridiculous. I don’t think I identified directly with any of the characters, I just felt like crying, and so I did – all through the credits.

There’s an Everybody Loves Raymond episode (of course there is, there’s one for everything – it’s almost like Seinfeld that way) where Deborah gets the house to herself for the morning. Ray decides to spy on her because he’s curious as to what she plans to do. He peeks through the window at one point and sees her sitting on the couch, crying with a box of Kleenex and she’s not even watching TV or anything. Of course he gets all worried.

Sometimes it takes awhile for me to cry about something because I’m just so busy that I don’t have time. Last week I stopped by Albertsons after work. As is often the case, I chose the wrong check out line and ended up waiting for a long time. Because I had nothing else to do I thought about a conversation I had with a friend the night before. He told me a lot of things, some of which kind of made me feel bad. It was actually a good conversation and I bore it like a champ, but hadn’t really had time to think about it until that moment in the check out line. So I stood there, holding my chocolate milk and all-purpose flour, on the verge of tears. I looked up and saw the bagger kind of lean to the side so he could get a better glimpse of me as he tried to figure out what was wrong. Poor guy – he looked so concerned. Nothing’s wrong, really. Seriously, don’t worry about it.


Saule Cogneur said...

Some friends out here have this thing they call "The Crying Update." Though I never have anything to contribute, the rest of them always talk about the last time they cried. It's surprisingly fun.

For children, crying is the first line of defense when something is wrong. For adults, it's more about expression of intense emotion. For me... well, I rarely cry, so I must not have emotions.

Clearly there is something more wrong with the person who cries than the one who doesn't cry. For now, I guess I'd better hope my reactions are simply delayed like yours. Maybe my lag time is on the order of 5 years. That's reasonable, right?


Annie said...

I recently had a sobbing session at my desk when I got an email. Bad, bad day. Nothing like sobbing at your desk with people walking by.

I think Carri drank your chocolate milk. And I think if you stood in line at the checkout crying as you bought it she owes you another one.

leandparkermakes3 said...

I did the same thing with the movie "Once." I watched it all by myself, and at the end, I cried like a baby. I loved that show.

Ilene said...

I wish I could cry on command to squeeze some sympathy out of my kids.

Because yelling is surprisingly ineffective.

Ilene said...

by the way, I like your new header.

Can you hear Mr. Rochester calling?

Lisa Marie Trent said...

I cried about 10 minutes ago. At the end of JUNO when she is lying in bed after having the baby. And I remember that feeling of not WANTING to cry, but NEEDING to- after giving birth. It's like a reflex.

But crying in front of Jack has NO effect. So I can't get anything from that.

Oh, and Josh cried during "The Notebook".


carter said...

there's this one book that I read the kids and I always end up crying at the end. Serious.

Jergs Family said...

I guess I'm a crier. I cry when other people cry. My kids don't respond to me crying - or yelling, so where does that leave me? They just look at me like I've lost my mind and they wish that I'd hurry up and be done already.

Kevin cries during sports movies - "Rudy" anyone? What about "Remember the Titan"? Yes, those are the types of things that bring tears to my big strong man's eyes!

By the way, Carter - which children's book is it that you read and cry about? I'm curious to know if it's the same one that makes me "misty" as we like to call it.

Lisa Marie Trent said...

Yeah, Carter, what book?

carter said...


No pictures, but yeah, this is the text.

Rhett said...

There is no way that I will ever understand women...

Lisa Marie Trent said...

that book is so disturbing, Carter. Especially with the included picture, of the grown man, rocking his old, wrinkled, lifeless mother.....

yeah, it's tear-worthy.