Tuesday, January 26, 2010
What Moves Us To Tears?
In the younger years of my marriage, tears came all too easily. Disappointments, exhaustion, misunderstandings, the trials and tribulations of learning to get along in the ups and downs of life with this person I just could not live without. My eyes would fill and spill over with the tender over-emotionalism of youth. There is an intensity to those years, but it's like many other seasons I've experienced. I am grateful for what it gave me, what it taught me, and that it has passed.
Around Year Ten I think I dried up. Perhaps I overtaxed my poor tear ducts, but ever since then it really takes a lot more to move me to an emotional lament. I nurse some things more tenderly, mourning in the deeper recesses of the quiet of my heart. Other offenses that might have bruised me a decade or more ago, no longer register with the same degree of sensitivity - or even meaning that I once read into them.
Still, being a woman with all the unpredictability that we claim right to, this can change. Accept this or struggle with an unfathomable attempt at understanding us, it's your call. We don't always understand what it means to be a woman ourselves exactly, to tell the truth.
My sister, Lana, went to be with the Lord ten years ago this past Christmas Eve. Photographs don't have the same impact for me as they do for almost every other woman I know. But other things do. Handwriting does. Tonight I was organizing my cookbooks, purging most to give to Goodwill. Underneath the tombs on the top shelf was an old beaten up yellow envelope stuffed with recipes clipped from magazines. I tossed them all in the recycle bin. But the envelope I'm keeping. It has Lan's familiar feminine backwards slant - her name and mine. Her hand penned them.
I hold my breath and my body clenches in an emotional squeeze. This is a moment for tears... and they fall.