Friday, October 30, 2009

Yeah, All Right, So I Cried

See, I'm not much of a crier. Sure, I get misty-eyed at the occasional orchestra concert and other stuff like that. Sometimes I tear up while reading. Or last week when my son earned the Arrow of Light (the highest rank in cub scouts). Little stuff, you know? And tears rarely make it past my eyes cuz I blink them back like crazy.


But this past weekend, I went for the gold medal in crying. And it's not that pretty crying. No, more like these weird animal sounds and the need for an entire roll of toilet paper and then solitary confinement.

The worst part? Not knowing exactly why I'm so upset.

So yeah. I'll spare you the details.

This post isn't about my issues, it's about encouragement. Where do you go when you've earned the gold in crying? Do you have someone that can lift you from the depths of despair? Something you read to inspire you?

I do. The problem? I rarely go there before we're watching Survivor and I'm sobbing on the couch. My DH is looking at me like I've gone crazy and the kids run for cover. Yeah, I'm a bottler. I think I can handle everything myself, that no one will understand anyway, and that hey, this isn't that big of a deal.

Until I have the gold.

So anyway, where do you find encouragement? Are you a source of strength for other people? How?

34 comments:

Valerie Geary said...

My dog's good for a snuggle when I'm crying. Unless I really start to wail, then she runs away and hides upstairs. :)

PJ Hoover said...

If I'm crying that bad, I normally go to the husband first. And if it's writing related (oy), I'm so thankful to have writing friends who all totally get it.

I'm sending lots of happy thoughts your way.

Lisa and Laura said...

I started crying at the gym today when I saw a story on CNN about a boy who convinced his football team to wear pink for his mom with cancer. Yeah, I guess I'm a bottler...

Nicole_Hadaway said...

I try to cry regularly so I don't bottle it up and let it all out -- I do bottle my anger though, and need to get better at that.

Congrats on your son winning the Arrow of Light!

And the lows are there to remind us to cherish and enjoy the highs, which always come again. Take care, Elana.

Tere Kirkland said...

Things can get pretty intense for me if I bottle things up, so I like to get in a good cry every now and again. Of course, anything sad or inspiration I see or read makes me a bit teary eyed, so it doesn't take much to set me off.

(hugs)

T. Anne said...

I have to tell you I've wanted to sob on more occasions than I'd like to remember but there's no easy way to do this with a house full of people.

MG Higgins said...

It's good to let it out! Sending a hug your way.

Tamika: said...

I have a good cry every few months. If life get complicated I am always open for me.

I usually just run into the arms of Jesus. For me there is no better place.

Stephanie Thornton said...

I have those moments when life just throws me one too many punches and everything kind of falls apart. My hubby is always good for a hug, but it usually takes me putting things in perspective to calm down.

I mean, come on, I live in an awesome place, I get to do something I love all day (teach), and I have an amazing daughter. Compared to most people in the world I'm living the life of a queen.

Hmmm... I should bookmark this. That way when I'm sitting chin deep in rejection slips I can remember perspective. :)

I'm sending happy vibes your way!

Scott said...

Heck, I cry all the time. Little House on the Prarie - pass the Kleenex please. Touched by an Angel - more Kleenex please. The Waltons - two boxes please. Steel Magnolias - do I have stock in Kleenex yet.

When I get really, really down, I have three sources of encouragement - my partner and my two best friends. I can always count on them to give me a reality check and get me back on the path to a semi-idyllic life.

S

Jessica said...

Oh No! I'm sorry about the crying jag. That stinks. I'm glad it's over though.
I don't know if I'm an encouragement for others. I hope so, but no one has really cried on my shoulders. I'm a very private crier and maybe that translates to others, because when they cry it's so awkward for me. My mil almost ran over a puppy once and started crying. I just hugged her and patted her back, but didn't know what to say.
I don't go to anyone. Well....sometimes hubby, but I prefer the darkness of the bathroom. There's probably negative reasons. Heh.
I hope your weekend goes better.
:-)

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Sometimes we have to let loose all the toxic grief, guilt, hurts of a lifetime that linger in the background most of the time. That's when we have a cry that shakes the walls. Hopefully, now that you've washed it out of your system, you'll be feeling like Elana the Awesome, Witty and Brave, which you totally are.

B.J. Anderson said...

I'm a bottler. And kind of sensitive, too. Which is bad. I let things build and build and then something stupid will set me off and I'll bawl for hours. I hope you feel better soon! Hang in there.

Melanie Avila said...

I hope the crying helped. I wouldn't say I bottle things up, but I tend not to share and all of a sudden I'm overwhelmed with whatever's bothering me.

I think I tend to help others more than I go to other people for help. I'm getting better about it, and it does help, but I hate dumping my issues on other people.

Secretia said...

My thoughts, if you haven't cried in a while. you're overdue.

Secretia

Regina Quentin said...

I bottle things in as well. Plus I'm always around like 1,002 people (at home) so there is no convenient time to break down and cry or at the very least talk about what is going on. BLAH. I need to get better at this. I much agree with the wise comment above, "if you haven't cried in a while. you're overdue."

ElanaJ said...

Thanks guys! It was really only for a few minutes. But it felt like hours. Can you believe something as no-big-deal as Survivor set me off? Sheesh. But you know. Gotta get it all out somehow.

Thanks for the encouragement!

ali said...

I am not a cryer either, Elana.

When I am, hormones are likely the culprit--if it weren't for those stinkers, I'd probably be able to handle even the tough stuff without tears.

For encouragement? Friends. Words. Time. Space.

I think I'm a source of encouragement too for my friends--it's a give and take sorta thing.

((hugs))

Icy Roses said...

Haha, weird animal noises?

I don't like crying in front of people, normally.

The best place to find encouragement and a cure: music, friends, and food. And I like to read old positive reviews (in the case of writing) to bolster my confidence. That's what I save them for, after all.

Solvang Sherrie said...

I used to mock teary eyed people. Then I had kids. Now everything makes me cry. When I was pregnant I cried during an Adam Sandler movie. My husband just expects it now. And my kids alternate between mocking me and hugging me (depending on what I'm crying for!). So I don't know how much strength I provide for anyone! But I'm glad my family at least gets me (sort of).

Elizabeth Bradley said...

When I started going through menopause I was crying like a fool. Waa, waa, waa. My kids thought I'd gone over the deep end. Hormones finally righted themselves and I've returned to sanity. I still blubber more than I used to though. Not a bad thing really, they say crying is GOOD for us.

Abby said...

Depends on the day for me. I'm usually okay, but some days, anything will set me off--commercials, the elderly man at the grocery store helping his little wife scoot around the store. It's ridiculous.

I have a great support system. My husband is great, and I know I can lean on him for anything. He's always there to tell me what an awesome mom/writer/person I am, even when I'm sure he's lying. :)

Jemi Fraser said...

I have always been a sap - not likely to change now. I don't cry often - but do you remember the commercial a few years back - boy calls his grandpa from Dieppe to thank him for fighting in WWII? I turned into a puddle. Have a hard time even talking about Pay it Forward! Hope you're feeling better :)

Amy Tate said...

Elana, we are kindred spirits, gal. I do the same thing. For years I haven't had a close girlfriend to share stuff with...just one of those gaps in life. My soul sisters and I went different directions during college. And I'm not the Mom groupie type. When I reach that point it usually means one of two things. I'm either getting sick, or my brain is on overload and I need to back off from work - easier said than done. You're going to think I'm nuts, but when I need some alone time, one of my favorite things to do is to ride the escalator at Macy's in the mall. That store smells like expensive perfume and new stuff. I'll grab a cup of coffee, ride the escalator a few times, and surround myself with "life." It turns me into a new woman every time.

L.T. Elliot said...

I'm a bottler but not only do I bottle up the emotion, I bottle up the response to it too. I have a VERY hard time letting people in so when I "go for the gold", I usually do it alone. My poor husband gets some of it but for the most part, I hide.
As for things that set it off? A song in the car did that and I fell apart in the driveway. Sheesh.
As for whether or not I'm a support to someone else, I don't know that I have that answer. I'd like to think so.

I'm sorry you had a gold moment. I know they're hard. Glad you had your DH there to help you through.

Terresa said...

I find encouragement in sleeping it off, whatever it is. Also, in chocolate dosing, losing myself in a good book, and in reading poetry that helps me see my small world is much larger than I realize.

Perspective helps immensely, too. Sometimes I'm too close to my problem to figure out a solution. At that point, a trip, a Ladies Night Out, or a walk helps. Talking it out helps, too.

A good cry (going for "the gold") can also be therapeutic.

To answer your other question: I'm a source of strength for others by being a good listener. Or so I've been told.

quixotic said...

Sometimes crying is all that is needed. It is the shedding of the pent up emotions that allows us to reach bottom and see that there is only one way to go, up.

I'm a suffer in silence type. I have to pull myself up by the boot straps. I end up feeling guilty when I let lose my emotions on others.

Little Ms J said...

Revel in your tears. I truly believe we need them. I get encouragement in many different places - from my husband, my friends over a glass of wine or a hardcore workout. Sometimes I'll email my sister, "I need a pep talk." Then she tells me how amazing I am and I do the same thing when she's down.

Be thrilled that you could let go of it. It is healthy.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I cry at everything. Even Kleenex commercials! And I bawl while writing sad parts to my stories, and continue to do so while I edit them. I know, that's really pathetic. Ironically I don't cry when I get rejections. Maybe that's the only time I don't cry. :D

Suzyhayze said...

email me?

Karen Denise said...

The older I get, the easier I cry. I remember thinking how lame my sister was for crying over the slightest little thing when we were younger, but now a commercial can get me going.

When I get to that point of no return and I have to have a snot-induced cry, I usually have it alone and then I'll call my sister or my mom and tell them about it.
Somehow, my sister always seems to say the right thing. Sometimes my mom misses the mark and I know she would be hurt to know I said that, but it's not from lack of trying. I think it's a generational thing. My sister is only 3 years older than I am and she really GETS me. See, now I'm getting teary-lol.

Hardygirl said...

I'm so with you! I'm the queen of bottling--and then I hold it in so long that something completely trivial will set me off.

Chocolate helps. So does a new t-shirt. And exercise.

Okay, so now I'm sounding shallow . . .
sf

Carolyn V. said...

I'm a bottler too. I get encouragement from my hubby. He is the one who is always there (even when I am sobbing as I wash the dishes). And the chocolate, the chocolate works wonders. =)

Jen Chandler said...

I am right there with you. I keep things inside until they just erupt into temper tantrums and tears. First, I go to my husband who patiently listens and then offers good advice. Then I usually write it all out in a letter to my best friend. She always, ALWAYS knows just what to say and when I get the response, I'm more clear-headed about the whole incident. If it's writing related, my best writing friend and I hash everything out in long winded emails!

Jen

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