Wah Wah Wah

In the last several years, I hadn’t done it much at all.  In fact, it occured with such infrequency that I sometimes wondered if something was wrong with me.  It’s not that it never happened, but now, geez, for some reason it has been happening nearly every day.   Sometimes it is just a quickie. Other times it lasts for hours, and, at the risk of over-sharing, lately it has been known to happen more than once a day.  There are equal number of times that I feel invigorated at the end as there are times I heavily roll over, fully sated, and immediately fall into a deep and peaceful slumber.

Since getting remarried a couple of months ago, it’s frequency has increased rather dramatically – seldom does a day go by without it and, between you and me, I am actually growing a little tired of it.  It is not something that I ever ask for.  I never know when, where or how it will start or where I will be.  And I am never able to stop it.  Ever.  Yeah, yeah, I know:  I’m a newlywed…

Oh, wait!  You of the saucy thinking have got it all wrong.  I am not talking about what you think I am (or at least what I think you think), although; if I am being honest…oh, never mind.  Yeah, what I am referring to is my serial crying, weeping, many times even sobbing which is entirely appropriate and/or completely unjustified, often at the same time.

Perhaps what I am experiencing is stimulation overload as a result of adjusting to a new life including (but not limited to) my new town/new school/new husband/new kids/new doctors/new hairdresser/new manicurist/new Target/new gym/new in-laws/new area code/new Chipotle/new synagogue/new mall/new teachers/new house rules/new neighbors/new job search/new friends/new fucking everything.

And it sucks.


I’m not taking to bed (except that one Saturday morning when Barry pretty much dragged me out of bed where I was very comfortably curled up in the fetal position under the covers fully prepared to cry all day.  He did the right thing, perhaps a bit less gently than I might have liked, but I got up, showered and went on with my day impassive, yet not catatonic.

I am not over- or under- eating[1], drinking, shopping, sleeping or spending.  Okay, I might have bought a not entirely necessary pair of boots, but, really, what girl doesn’t appreciate the curative powers of new boots?  In fact, I considered it a good sign…not to mention that fact that allowing that DSW coupon to expire before I managed to use it might well have set off a crying jag. Crisis averted!

I am not without joy.  Why, just the other night, a school night, no less, a pair of Elvis Costello tickets fell in our laps and Barry and I had a blast running around town eating, drinking and carrying on while en route to the concert.  So fun, in fact, that I memorialized it on Facebook…because we all know that Facebook tells the whole story.

I have also not done the unthinkable (and, according to my father, worst thing possible) and lost my sense of humor.  That being said, I cop to being decidedly slower to get started, but take comfort in the fact that once I have loosened up, I still manage to crack myself up.  In fact, this picture proves that I have not totally lost my mojo.  Prior to it being taken, I had never seen these women were complete strangers. They were chatting with one another on the street when I approached them and asked if they were married because, if they were not, I was willing to offer up my husband to them.  (They declined.) Our exchange reminded me that I am still me, waterworks notwithstanding.


Yet, I’ve become a big old crybaby.


In the weeks following my father’s dire lung cancer diagnosis, he, a man I had never seen falter or succumb to emotion overload, became a crybaby.  His tears were not actually because he had just been told that he would likely die within the year (of note: he lived nearly three very full years), but because it was a lot to take in.  He would often remind us (and himself) that “he had to die from something”, and this just happened to be it.  His tears were, in my opinion, his way of literally and figuratively purging himself of the overflow of emotion and fear and change and stress and worry so vast that it leaked, sometimes poured, right out of him.  I recall my brother having a similar spell during a chaotic time in his life.  In both instances, once we realized (sort of) what was going on, we were able to make sport of it.  In fact, it was not uncommon to sigh, roll our eyes and ask, “are you gonna cry again?!?”

I am not quite there yet…my crying is not funny to me.  It is (usually) cathartic, (sometimes) helpful and (often) irritating.[2]  I am still processing the changes, the stresses, the fears, the adjustments.  I continue to work hard to create a whole new life with my old body, old fears, old view of the world and old walls that need to be broken down.

I put on a good show.  People are surprised when I tell them that I have become a blubbering fool, or that I have this whole lonely-even-when-I-am-surrounded-by-people thing, or cop to not being as confident as I have been told I seem to or should be, but I am here to tell you otherwise.

Despite, or perhaps because of the weep-fests, I am (slowly) processing, adapting and journeying.  Like my dad, the original crybaby, I do not always do change very well[3] and, man oh man, there’s been a lot of change.  Ultimately, it’s all good.  In the final analysis, I am growing and changing and learning…all while sniveling, quaking and nose-blowing.

So there you have it.  Soul bared.  Honesty on a plate.  Apologies to you, dear reader, to have lured you in with what you thought I was talking about only to drag you into this snot-laden, middle-aged, out of control and sometimes dehydrating phase of my life.  It is just that, however: a phase.  Part of growing up.  Adulting and all that.

If you happen to be in my company, consider yourself warned that you may find yourself watching me cry which, I think we can all agree, is better than finding yourself observing what you thought I was talking about…right?

[1] Seriously, just once could I lose my appetite?  Is a sadness-induced weight loss to much to ask for?

[2] Fun fact: those of us with blue eyes tend to be the same people who, as a parting gift following a crying jag, are left with what I (not so) affectionately call iguana eyes.  Google it.

[3] I can think of about a dozen people off the top of my head who will attest to this.

8 thoughts on “Wah Wah Wah

  1. Thank you for sharing. I too, just moved to a new city, and find myself bawling a lot. And the iguana eyes are the absolute worst. Luckily I can put on glasses.

  2. my new town/new school/new husband/new kids/new doctors/new hairdresser/new manicurist/new Target/new gym/new in-laws/new area code/new Chipotle/new synagogue/new mall/new teachers/new house rules/new neighbors/new job search/new friends/new fucking everything…..Hey, Julie, You’d be nuts if you didn’t come unglued in this adjustment. Here’s a promise: The freedom and lack of responsibility in old age is fabulous even though it’s a mixed blessing. The older you get, the better it all becomes. You’ll make it, don’t worry. Joan Ellis

  3. After reading this, I have the strong urge to hug you Julie, but it’s a long reach from Michigan. So, I’m sending you a psychic hug. BTW, I love the gray in you hair. It’s very pretty.

    • Thank you, Elyse!
      Funny you should mention the gray. Up until recently, the gray was limited to a spot in the front (think Cruella DaVille). Suddenly it is more all over and I am kinda liking it myself. That being said, the first person to tell me I look old (who will no doubt be my brother, Robbie” or calls me ma’am will result in an immediate call to my hairdresser!

  4. And I don’t know if this happens to everyone with contacts, but for me, when I cry a lot, it totally destroys my contacts. I don’t know if something in my tears wears off the coating or what, but there’s nothing like the entire world being fuzzy and bleary to make you feel even WORSE after you’ve been bawling for a good while… then i usually replace them and go, “Well, there goes $10…”

  5. I haven’t had a good cry in a long while. Sometimes I feel as though I’m incapable. Embrace the tears and enjoy the purge.

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