I had a student come into my office the other day totally broken. I could tell she was on the verge of bursting. But she sat there all prim and proper talking at the surface level, thinking she was faking someone out. She wasn’t fooling me at all. It was so glaringly obvious that she was not okay, she may as well have been wearing a purple wig inside out with mascara on her nose. She was not holding it together as well as she thought she was. I finally stopped her and asked, “What are you trying to hold together? We can’t get to the real issue until you put aside the mask and just be real.” And, instantly, she burst into tears and let it all out, shamefully apologizing the whole time. I told her that this space was safe and that she could be real here. No crackheads up in here. No faking it. Just real, so we can get to the heart of the issue. She cried, and then laughed and asked… “Did you just call me a crackhead, Dr. Pamela?” “Yes”, I said with a smile…”Yes I did. Now, don’t be one and tell me what’s really going on.”
What is it about us and this idea that there is something wrong with crying? When people are heartbroken, they apologize for crying. When someone is overcome with joy, they apologize for crying. When someone gives a thank you speech, they apologize for crying. Women fan their faces to keep the tears from falling. Men hide their eyes and drop their heads. Why? Crying cleanses us. It doesn’t get more authentic than free-flowing tears… and authenticity is what we all crave- from ourselves and from other people. When we see other people living freely and authentically, we help others do the same. We were given our emotions for a reason. We can’t be ashamed of them. Life is too short to be walking around hiding ourselves and keeping the bad stuff inside. Don’t you realize that bad stuff creates havoc on our bodies from the inside out? Let it out and keep it moving. Today, I challenge you. Laugh. Cry. Dance. Love. LIVE.
This Hopeful Romantic