Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Happy Tears

I was in 9th grade when my emotional sensibilities kicked in. We watched "The Odyssey" in my English literature course and when Odysseus' wife, Penelope, realizes her husband has returned after 17 long years away, I wept for them. Thankfully, the lights were off in the classroom and my silent tears went mostly unnoticed by my classmates. That same year, I watched "City of Angels". And Nicolas Cage's previously unfelt pain was like my pain. He gave up everything for Meg Ryan and then she was gone. I set next to my friend since Kindergarten, Caroline, as we both tried to hide our tears. Apparently, we were saps.

But I didn't get it from any stranger: graduations, particularly important birthdays, high school dances, meaningful Christmas gifts, "Forever Young" by Rod Stewart; all produce tears from my mother's eyes. My sister and I used to make fun of her, now we embrace it. Especially since we're usually right there with her. My sister decided to make my mom a scrapbook of family photos for christmas. She started in October. I contributed scrapbooking materials, my sister's boyfriend picked out the book, and his son (my sister's semi-stepson) created his own page full of pictures and stickers. We decided weeks ago my mom would bawl like a baby when she opened it. A week or two before Christmas, she commented on this to her boyfriend's 5-year old son who responded, with alarm: "why will Cappy (Cathy) cry?". My sister told him our mom would be crying happy tears, not sad tears. But the tears came far before Christmas morning, when my mom eventually opened (and cried over) her scrapbook. Christmas Eve, she had my sister and I open identical presents. Small, silver bracelets that read"Sisters are different flowers from the same garden". A few glasses of wine in, and obviously, we were a little emotional about it.

A few times in the past couple months, I've found myself crying for no particular reason. Usually, in the car when I have nothing but my thoughts to keep me company or when an emotional song hits me, juuuust right.

But a lot of the time, I'm just thinking about all the good right now: my family, my high school friends, my college friends, my Lawrence friends, my coworkers, my job. Life isn't perfect, but I'm living it. Everyday, I'm doing what I want. I'm enjoying what I have. I'm dating someone and trying not to freak out or do that thing women do. I'm just glad I get to spend time with someone I am so grateful to have met this year who also happens to be an incredible person. Other than that, I don't want to push it.

So, there's all this good stuff? And I'm appreciating what I DO have, opposed to lamenting what I DON'T. I think that's what us humans would call happiness. And I'm thrilled to be there! May you always cry more happy tears!


  1. Crying (with happy tears)is good; it releases bad feelings hidden in the soul and body.

    Have a Happy New Year1

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  3. City of angels is my all time favourite movie ever.