When I was a teenager, I cried till my tears ran out and my eyes swelled up shut. I did not even bother to save tears for the next night, although somehow, I still managed to produce a bucket full of tears…each night. Every night. It was my first serious relationship, and after 3 years, I was faced with the harrowing reality that he had left me. After I gave it my all. After I let him take over my entire being.
This was in the mid-1970s, I was a naive young woman who had expected only to marry the man I gave myself to. I did not think I would ever recover, that I would rise above the pain. Crying was my only refuge. It was what held me together. I looked forward to nightfall, when I would once again pour my heartache into my pillow – if only my pillow can speak to describe the many contortions my face could create.
Now 40 years later, my life has since taken various twists and turns, ups and downs, happiness interlaced with sadness, and I still take to crying my heart out whenever I need a fresh start with my emotions. Now I not only do it at night, I also manage to pull it off when I’m in the shower, or when I’m driving or when I go hiking with my dogs.
The effect is the same, from when I was a heartbroken teenager, up to now as I am in my senior stage of life. Crying is not just a flowing of tears or a contraction of the face; it is a spiritual cleansing of sorts. It enables me to purge the hurt, the pain, the emotional wounds from my system, like a hose on waterjet mode meant to cut away tough oil stains on the driveway.
After a crying session with myself, I feel a veil of gray cloud lifting off my inner self. That veil seems to carry with it a ton of negative energy that burdens me throughout my day, as if the Grand Canyon is pressing down on my back. Once it is lifted off me, an overwhelming sense of peace and calm takes over, and a promising hope for a new day becomes easier to bear. And no one would ever know what had just transpired the night before.
The power of crying. The power of cleansing.