Tuesday, May 29, 2012
The other day, my daughter reminded me of an incident that happened about twelve years ago. I won't get into the details, but it had to do with an especially aggressive debt collector, a misunderstanding, and a lack of knowledge of my own rights. The collector called me, scared me, and I started to cry. My daughter remarked, while remembering the incident, that it had been the first time she'd ever seen me cry.
Really? The first time? I feel like I cry all the time. Maybe I do, now. But apparently I didn't always, or at least my child didn't notice it.
Have you ever looked into a mirror while you are crying? I have, I don't recommend it. I am not such a pretty crybaby. I have cried when I'm angry at my husband for complaining about dinner....not so pretty. I've cried when I didn't get my way. I've cried when jealousy has overcome me, when I argued with a friend over some triviality, when my son would rather spend time with his friends than with me, when my daughter won't take my advice, when someone at my church said some unthinking thing I thought was mean. Keep the mirrors away from me when I'm crying about those things, because I am not pretty.
But sometimes, I'm beautiful. Even with the red, scrunched up face, smudged mascara, streaming eyes, and sniffling nose, I'm a beautiful crybaby. And so are you! I've cried at weddings. I cry when I hear stories of salvation. I cry at baptisms. Sometimes I cry when I hear songs that remind me of people I don't see often. I cry when my son sings praise songs, because I love to hear his journey. I cry when my daughter goes off to camp, because I know I'm going to miss her.
All the crying that comes from LOVE, I'm ok with. Weeping about the empty nest coming quickly....I'm ok with that, I'll miss having them around every day. Crying because I still miss my dad and my grandparents...I'm ok with that, too. I love them.
And what about all that crying that comes from happiness? Seeing my daughter's photograph in a magazine, checking my son's first year of college grades and seeing that he made it through! There's happiness in that, and relief. The tears are a release of all that happy.
But my favorite kind of beautiful crying is when it comes from laughter. I didn't ask my daughter if she remembers the first time she saw me laugh until I cried, but I hope she doesn't remember a beginning. I do it a lot, and I hope I've always done it.
PS...Baby 'A' here in the picture is pouting because we annoyed her. She's still beautiful, isn't she? I'm not so pretty when my crying is cause by being annoyed, though! Ha!
****So what about you? When's the last time you cried, and was it not-so-pretty crying, or was it beautiful?
Posted by Ruth Ronk at 2:39 PM