Have you ever felt the sudden urge to cry? Crying can be a soothing relief for emotional distress, physical pain, grief, empathy, surprise, and anger. When you can’t explain or express the strong range of emotions, they come in the visible form of tears. Tears are the body’s natural response to getting support, a cry for help to release those strong emotions without a spoken word. This happened to me last week.
I’m not a cryer. Anyone that knows me personally will tell you that they have yet to see me shed a tear. In my mind, it was a sign of weakness and it took away from my strength. The "never let anyone see you cry" mentality. I would release my tears when I was alone and no one could hear me weep or suppress them altogether. As time went on, I would cry less, to the point where I didn’t shed a tear throughout an entire year. I became numb to not allowing myself to feel any of my emotions deeply. Life has a way of making you dig deep to tap into those emotions.
The heaviness I carried around on January 5th was like no other, but I was determined to just let it pass. I decided that I was going to control my emotions and have a great day. I did that for the most part. That evening, while I was preparing to head out to work in the garage, the heaviness returned. I was alone with nothing to distract me from this feeling slowly taking over. Again, I refuse to let it control me. I suppress it by working. I felt my chest tighten, my head started pounding, my throat felt like I was choking, and I had to scream out to release what was in it. I whisper to myself, "Don’t you cry, Tamara, don’t do it!" My voice shakes. I’m sensing that I’m starting to lose control of my emotions.
It’s happening! My hands are shaking uncontrollably as I reach for my face to try to stop the tears from falling. My eyes are pouring tears like a waterfall. I just let the tears flow, allowing myself to feel all of the emotions I had locked away inside. I cried for at least ten minutes without interruption. My eyes became swollen, red, and dry from crying. I take a deep breath and wipe my face off with my shirt because my hands are soaked with tears. A huge weight was lifted off my chest. My soul was pleased.
The heaviness of not dealing with the hurt, the grief, and all the sentimental emotions caught up with me. I had packed up my emotions by booking a "release your feelings" flight to send them off without a final destination, just a delayed takeoff. I carried it around for months until the weight was too much for me to bear. It dawned on me that I gained my strength by crying out when I couldn’t put into words how I felt inside. The pain of my tears wiped away my struggles so that I could see the beauty within my soul. The pain I carried could’ve been released months ago had I just cried. The nerve of me to think that crying was for the weak and helpless. At that moment when I felt helpless, God showed me that I wasn’t alone. He heard my cry. My tears were my prayers to God when I couldn’t speak. I will continue to cry out for help to save myself. Read Psalm 56:8.