Wednesday, August 3, 2011


Lips that taste of tears, they say,
Are the best for kissing.
~Dorothy Parker

The cure for anything is salt water - sweat, tears, or the sea. ~Isak Dinesen

To weep is to make less the depth of grief. ~William Shakespeare, King Henry the Sixth

It is such a secret place, the land of tears. ~Antoine de Saint-Exupery, The Little Prince

Those who knew me when I was younger will be surprised that I have to say yes to crying, as, when I was a girl and teenager, tears were a near-daily occurrence. But, over time, I learned to numb myself, to hold the waters in or just to feel differently about situations that would normally send me into the ocean as a younger person.

During the initial phone call that indicated the sudden change in the relationship with X-man, I did cry--sudden changes still have that effect on me, but over the past several weeks since then, my tears have been strikingly absent.

A spiritual mentor told me once that crying is good because it washes away the crap that's in our eyes from having our head up our rears for so long. My parents always told me that it was okay to cry. And so I did. I cried at everything. I cried instead of talking. I cried and ran from classrooms, living rooms, beds, exams, jobs, etc. Then, at 25, after four years in a physically abusive relationship, I numbed up; I cried much less.

I'm happy to report that after inhabiting a textbook case of being a domestic abuse partner, I was able to escape from the relationship, and spend some years thawing out and learning to open myself again. However, when I hit a large loss, particularly romantic in nature, instead of the requisite tears, I'd tend towards depression and self-hatred. Apparently, twenty years later, that tendency's intact. So, If I'm to change everything about who I am ("The only thing you have to change is everything," or so I've been told), then I need to re-learn, to recover, the crying Dawn. I need to wail and sob, I need to cry like Alice, until there's an ocean I can float away on, escape my unfortunate predicament.

There's something, the memory of the relationship, lodged in my body, that I need to release, not with words--talk-therapy or girl talk--but with a part of the water that makes up myself. I need to release it like toxins, like waste, and replenish myself with freshwater every day so I can release more until it--until he--is all gone, out of my system, and I am alone with myself again, whole and unbothered by his serpentine half-truths and lies--all those terrible things are going to live in the river to be washed with the rest of the world's tears, into the ocean.

And when the body has cried all it can cry, there's nothing to do but laugh:

Those who do not know how to weep with their whole heart don't know how to laugh either. ~Golda Meir

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