Tears, Anyone?

I found myself reflecting tody about crying. It may be because two residents at the Hospice House I volunteer at recently died.

I don't cry often. I remember one time vividly, though. Both my parents are buried at a military cemetary in Exeter, Rhode Island. When the casket is unloaded from the hearse, it is placed on a platform and is then literally emptied onto a conveyor belt that is underneath the patform. When it falls, the noise is very loud and metalic. I don't remember crying when this happened to my father's coffin- perhaps I was shocked out of tears. But, when it happened again, it brought back the memory of his death and I was hit with grief for both of them. I cried uncontrollably.

In chaplain training, we talked about tears providing a way to express grief and the healthy aspects of a good cry. We were told to be mindful about what message we may be sending when we offer a kleenex. Are we giving the message that the person should stop their tears? Keeping this this in mind, I attempt when possible to have the kleenexes nearby so the person can reach for them if needed, but not interrupting the moment by handing them over.

When nature cries, it nourishes us. One of my favorite smells is the air after a rainstorm. Tears serve a purpose. I think the thought about crying came to me because I need to be more comfortable about expressing my feelings through tears.

So, what do you think about crying?