Fighting Through The Tears

When we were born, the first thing we did was cry. We came out looking for food and then used our tears to control our parents to give us what we want; be it changed a diaper, a bottle, or just plain old attention. As we developed into the men and women that we are today, we now save our tears for the big heartbreaks, pain, and sadness. If you’re like me and you laugh way too hard, then you tend to cry in moments of joy as well.

The award-winning poet, Heather Christle, dives into dissecting how crying can both help and hurt us, using history and science. Dealing with her own struggles with depression and the birth of her child, Christle faces “her joy, grief, anxiety, impending motherhood, and conflicted truce with the world.”

Image Via

The Crying Book describes the delights and surprises of crying by bringing understanding to mental illnesses and the expressions of women’s agency. Christle explores this human behavior not only within herself, but how crying has been represented within the world. One of which is “the ways in which white women’s tears have been used to persecute people of color.” For me, that brings up the story of Emmett Till, who was accused in 1955 of whistling at a white woman and was beaten to death. It brings tears to my eyes to even think of something like that, but that’s the point of Christle’s book — to help you face your emotions head-on and the thoughts they evoke.

Image Via Fanthom Mag

As a new mother, Christle fears postpartum depression as it may affect her abilities as a parent. Instead of suppressing those emotions, she continues to dive into them in order to make them less strange. “Rather than denying that self-pity can be pleasurable, she reveals how that pleasure comes from enfolding oneself in imagined care.”

Instead of denying your tears, gain a better understanding of how people in history have dealt with them, and maybe it will help you do the same.

Featured Image Via The Adroit Journal


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