As children, we cry for a number of reasons: scraping our knees when we fall, someone picking on us, our feelings getting hurt by family or friends, and so on. As adults, we cry for deeper reasons: a song that moves us, the loss of a loved one close to us, the state of the world, and our own insecurities.
We try to hold in our emotions, appearing strong and saying we can handle the things life throws at us. If we cry, we are told it’s being weak or too emotional. Crying can be mostly depicted as the painful, mourning cries we experience when life seems unfair. But we also cry when we’re grateful, relieved, or when we just need to let the walls down and be vulnerable.
Today, I cried. I let the tears roll down and fall without trying to bat them away. I let myself feel the sadness, pain, and frustration that I held deep down inside. I then let it go, trying to tell myself that I will get through these painful trials.
Some of you may remember my “Chasing the Unattainable Dream” piece about seeing my favorite musician and role model, David Archuleta, after a 7-year long wait filled with impatience, frustration, and loss of hope. I had mentioned in that story about the other speakers that day who also left an impact on me. Just now, though, I remembered another speaker, Laurel C. Day, and her talk that left me thinking for a powerful reason.
The talk was about tears. Not just the tears we cried during difficult times, but also during the happy times. Our tears help us be heard and understood; they help us give our pain to God and release the emotions we have inside. I recall it now because I’ve come to believe that when you cry, you are releasing your pain. You are giving yourself a chance to heal by expressing your truest emotions instead of hiding them. Expressing yourself through tears takes the weight off your heart, brings you into the present moment, and helps you realize you are not alone and will get through your speed bump on the road of life.
Now that I’ve cried, I feel calmer and realize that I will be okay. I let myself feel feelings I’ve wanted to ignore, and I feel better through letting them out.
There is nothing wrong with crying or expressing one’s self through tears. They are a part of being human and moving forward through life. We cannot be strong all the time. Sometimes, we have to drop the armor and shed those tears we’ve tried to hold back.
If you need to cry, then do it. Whether in the privacy of your own home or with someone you can trust, let the tears flow.
You will be okay.