It seems like tears and laughter lie simultaneously just underneath the surface of me. In fact, all of my emotions are easily tapped into in the blink of an eye. I have always been this way. Since I can remember, tears seem to readily spring to my eyes and humble me at the mere hint of an emotional moment. Whether it’s tears of joy or sadness, they are always willing to show what’s going on in my heart whether I want it known to the public or not. I have also had times that laughter came blasting out when it would have been so much better to hold it in. Yikes! So embarrassing! Sometimes, these strong emotional responses seem like a betrayal.
I often wonder how other people are able to have such great control over their emotions? I’ve always thought these people must be so strong. But the fact is, while it’s not always a choice, it takes great strength and humility to show the world what you are feeling on the inside.
I was talking with some friends recently when I came to realize that our emotions have a way of revealing themselves even when one has become an expert at keeping them at bay. These 2 ladies that I was talking with always seem to have things under control with their emotions tightly guarded. It’s not that they are cold-hearted, they just keep it together much better than I do. You will probably never ever see them cry in public. However, both had stories to tell that made me realize that emotions WILL come out one way or another.
One of these ladies was talking about her first time networking and she had not known that she would be expected to stand up and tell the room her name and a little bit about her business. As she sat waiting her turn, trying to keep the nerves from getting to her, she began to think of what she was going to say in her allotted 30 seconds. She ended up breaking out with hives all over her neck and chest before her turn came around. She seemed calm and collected on the outside, but on the inside she was a bundle of nerves and those nerves found a way to be acknowledged!
The other lady told about a time that she was to be giving a presentation in front of a room full of quite notable people. Unbeknownst to her, she began tap, tap, tapping her foot throughout the entire presentation. Again, those nerves and emotions found a release! My new nickname for her is Thumper.
Your heart is always telling you things. Quite often we try to ignore the message because it’s not convenient but sometimes your heart makes you listen. Don’t think that you have to be stoic or perfect. You don’t have to appear strong all the time. It’s ok to let your guard down. We must acknowledge our emotional responses and deal with them. When we show others our vulnerabilities it allows them to be more at ease about embracing their own weaknesses.
Both of these women can laugh at their experiences today but there is a lesson here. While I still get embarrassed that I cry so easily, I ultimately think it’s important to acknowledge what you feel and deal with what is going on inside. Avoiding your feelings is only a short-term solution. Your emotions will eventually be manifested into physical responses that are certain to be much more unpleasant than the alternative of shedding a few tears in public.
I know my emotions have a mind of their own. Over the years, I have come to accept that this is how God created me. I think I was given an extra “empathy gene” because I can see a total stranger across a room that is crying and it will make me cry too. I’m told that tears are cleansing. I must be pretty cleansed in that regard.
You can forget about taking me to see a sad movie! I can’t tell you how many movies I’ve waited till everyone has left the theater to sneak out with my puffy eyes and red nose. It’s so humiliating. Thank goodness those tear-jerkers are now available to view in the privacy of my home. I actually don’t watch many movies like this because they exhaust me emotionally and real life can offer more than enough opportunities to cleanse. But, if you’re ever in need of someone to cry or laugh with you, give me a call. I’m your girl!