Natalie Zed: Defying Gravity

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Vast Oceans Lachrymose

It hit me today that I know exactly how many times I have cried in the last year.

I've never been one to shed tears. Even as a very small child, I'd have a bad fall and adult would wince or suck in an alarmed breath, ready to swoop in, only to see me pop right back up and keep running. If I did cry, it was heart-stopping for my parents, since it meant I had managed to badly hurt myself. Even the time I split my scalp open falling against the sharp angle of a wall, I calmly walked downstairs and told my mom I'd hurt my head, covered in blood, sniffling slightly. "If you'd just have cried," she told me once, "you'd have saved me about a dozen heart-attacks."

Physical pain doesn't really do much to stimulate my tear ducts, but media can really get to me. Every now and again a scene in a movie will hit me in the right spot, or, more likely, a song. Suddenly I'll be blubbering away in a darkened theatre -- or, much more embarassingly, in the bathroom of a bar, because a song came on and a sick wave hit my stomach and now I have to wait in the stall until the swelling in my face goes down.

I suppose this is a round-about way of saying that I would much rather break my arm than my heart. Not having much practice being miserable -- and even less practice crying -- I don't know how to manage it. I feel like my face has suddenly sprung a leak. I am afraid to leave my house, knowing that at any moment a sound or a smell can leave me losing fluids. The rational part of my brain might be sitting back exasperated, even offended by the fact that some fucking John Mayr song has such power over me. My face becomes a traitor.

Happiness holds a return to stoicism. I can trust myself, knowing that I might be moved, even knocked breathless by something, I might squeeze out a tear or two, but I will probably be able to keep from becoming dehydrated.
Natalie Zed updated @ 12:32 a.m.!!