"I count myself one of the number of those who write as they learn and learn as they write." ~St. Augustine

Monday, May 14, 2012

Healthy Tears

She really does cry a lot.   My sweet girl.

She can cry easily when angry or sad.  She can cry when she is happy or surprised.

In fact, she cried again on Sunday.  She was sharing about a loved one that is in pain and hurting.  She wanted prayer.  She cried her way through the request and the prayer.  It worried the youth leader a bit, I think.  It doesn't worry me.

She cries while she worships and she cries while talking about friends she loves.  She cries while others gather around and pray.  Compassion, justice and mercy issues being one of the top "sure" things that will make this sweet girl cry.  Tears come very freely to her and I truly, genuinely love this about her.

I love that she cries.

You see, I can't.  I have trouble crying.  I always have.  Well, I should say, I always have---as far as I can remember.  Did I cry more at one time in my life, I don't know.   But, in these adult years... these past 20 years, to be sure... tears are hard to come by for me.  It isn't that I am not sad.  It isn't that I don't have sadness and pain that could fill a bucket of tears.  I do.  I just can't seem to cry them out.   I am learning.  And, I am crying a bit more these days.  I have indeed asked God for this gift of tears.  And, He has answered slowly.    But tears don't flow freely for me like they do for my girl.

Free flowing.  Freedom.

Last night before bed she asked her daddy how it is that I contain my emotions so easily.  She was asking, so it seemed, in manner of admiration.  How does Mom do it?! she wanted to know.  She wanted to learn the trick.

Oh!  Baby-girl, you don't need to learn how to suppress tears!  Yes, there are appropriate times and places.  And, you will learn that.  You are learning that, already.  But, please don't learn from me how to not cry!  Your tears are beautiful.  Just beautiful.  Please keep crying.  

Today in science, we read the most fascinating thing about tears.  Did you know that the tears you shed while cutting an onion, or getting sand in your face, are different than the tears you shed when you feel a strong emotion?  These two type of tears are unique from each other and have different chemicals.  One has the chemicals needed to protect the eye and fight off disease.  The other, the emotional tears, have three remarkable, medicating chemicals to help you handle the strong emotions.

"These chemicals include manganse [to calm you], luicine-enkephalin [a chemical to control pain], and the adrenocorticotrophic hormone [to help cope with stress].  When you get rid of these chemicals by crying, the net effect is to make you feel better.  By releasing these toxins, then, the tears serve to chemically and physically make you feel less depressed!  Thus, it really is true that you tend to feel better after a good, long cry.  ...the emotional tears we shed are a gift from a Designer.  Since He built in us the capacity for emotions, He also built in us the ability to deal with those emotions.  One of those is the ability to sit down and have a good, long cry." ~  Dr. Jay L Wile, Exploring Creation with General Science.  

My girl smiled big when we read this section today.  She laughed and said, "I must be very healthy-- Releasing all those toxins!"  She isn't wrong.

She is healthy!  It must be because she cries alot.
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