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Tears are Terrific, Crying is Courageous

Are you a softy hiding behind a tough exterior? Do your friends, family, cohorts, and lovers think you’re made of steel? Do they throw daggers at you, aiming to sting, convinced nothing bothers you?

Do you pride yourself on being the best banterer on the block when all you really want to do is be honest? Do you go home scarred, mauled, gloomy, depressed? Does it no longer serve you to keep a stiff upper lip? Do you frequently feel empty, alone, dejected, misread?

What is it about society that indicates you have to be hard as nails, that crying is a weakness reserved for sissies? Crying is essential at every age, through every trial and tribulation. It’s a myth that big girls and boys need to be stoic.

Did you receive messages growing up that you had to be strong and conceal emotion? Were you allowed to express the gamut of your feelings or forced to hide vulnerabilities lest you’d be chided, derided, reprimanded, or belittled? 

Were you judged as overly sensitive and thin-skinned when you showed passion, sadness, distress, apprehension, or offense? Were you afraid your parents and siblings couldn’t handle your sentiments, hence, burying them beneath a smile saying, “Everything’s fine?”

I was told by my father when I cried “If you don’t stop crying, I’ll give you something to cry about.” He meant that unless I stopped crying he’d hit me so I would feel what he deemed ‘real pain.’ After several similar threats, I understandably blocked my tear canals. 

Did you adopt the stance that if you had armor on, you’d be protected from harm, insult, injury? Did you build up such a resilient fortress, your walls have been impenetrable ever since?

Do you wish you could permit others to see your true personality, even when it’s not hunky dory? Do you dream you would just fall apart or rather, fall open and not have to act cool and collected? Do you imagine you’re a boiling tea kettle about to explode from too much steam?

Are you sick and tired of superficial tete a tetes? Do you crave closeness based on authenticity? Do you desire to go into the inner recesses of your psyche and heal the wounds that bind you, precluding the intimate connections you warrant?

A new year, a new you - it’s always an opportunity to transform and delve into a deeper level, peeling off strips, layer by layer. Do you desire to reveal your receptive, susceptible, insightful, perceptive, delicate, intuitive, creative, sensual side that’s been veiled for eons?

Tears are like the rain, cleansing and leaving rainbows behind. How can you reach the brightness and bliss, if you don’t first allow the sorrow and grief? Rainbows come after the rain for a reason. What happens in nature happens in life.

Crying is valiant, bold, and beautiful. Have you ever noticed how stunning someone looks after a good sob…younger, lighter, fresher, focused? When’s the last time, you unbolted the tear ducts?  Subsequently, did you experience a sense of calm, tranquility, serenity?

If you want inspiration in this realm, check out Carol Hall’s song “It’s All Right To Cry,” performed by football legend, Rosey Greer, on the “Free To Be You and Me” soundtrack from Marlo Thomas’s1974 film. Listen To It Online at radio.radiopi.com. View the lyrics below:

It's all right to cry
Crying gets the sad out of you
It's all right to cry
It might make you feel better

Raindrops from your eyes
Washing all the mad out of you
Raindrops from your eyes
It's gonna make you feel better

It's all right to feel things
Though the feelings may be strange
Feelings are such real things
And they change and change and change

Sad 'n' grumpy, down in the dumpy
Snuggly, hugly, mean 'n' ugly
Sloppy, slappy, hoppy, happy
Change and change and change

It's all right to know
Feelings come and feelings go
It's all right to cry
It might make you feel better

{Spoken}
It's all right to cry, little boy
I know some big boys that cry too.

Whether or not you spend time solo or with your sweetheart this Valentine’s Day week, give yourself a gift and allow the rain to pour from your eyes.

Find a comfy, quiet place in your home. Turn on soothing sounds. Practice guided meditation and relaxation from head to toe. Imagine you’re lying on the beach in the hot sun with the negative ions surrounding your body, easing tension in your muscles, bones, organs.

Remember an incidence or setting where you felt confident peaceful, and harmonious. Visualize the environment in detail. Was it a favorite vacation spot, skiing in the Alps, hiking up a mountain, swimming in hot springs, making love under the silvery moon?

Go back to when you first recall shutting down. What age were you? Where were you living?  What did your house look like? What were you wearing? Give that little boy/girl your blessing to liberate the tears, fears, woes.

You deserve to be loved inside and out, dark or light, positive or negative, difficult or easy.  You merit being held through delight and sorrow, despair and hope, sickness and health.

Listen to and recite affirmations e.g. I’m poised. I’m powerful. I’m capable. I’m loveable. I’m valuable. I’m a great friend, great kisser, great cook, great writer, etc.

This is an ideal occasion to discard barriers and display your tender, gentle, softhearted side. Instead of pretending to be potent and invincible with your mate, date, co workers, associates, express your sincere notions.

If their language or behavior is hurtful, respond with a straightforward, “Ouch!” This simple four letter word can work wonders in conveying your genuine character.

Hold your head up high. Cry your eyes out til they’re dry. You might discover you no longer need excess TV, drugs, alcohol, food, gambling, shopping, to numb. You may learn to appreciate and revel in the incredible release weeping brings. 

On Thursday February 14, you’re invited to attend one of the many events in support of V-Day’s ‘One Billion Rising’ campaign. Today, on the planet, a billion women – one of every three women on the planet – will be raped or beaten in her lifetime. That’s One Billion mothers, daughters, sisters, partners, and friends violated.

V-Day (the international organization started by “The Vagina Monologues” playwrite, Eve Ensler, dedicated to ending violence against women),  Refuses to stand by as more than a billion women experience violence.

February 14 is V-Day’s 15th Anniversary. They’re requesting one billion women and those who love them to Walk Out, Dance, Rise Up, And Demand an End to this Violence. One Billion Rising is a promise that we will rise up with women and men worldwide to say, "Enough! The Violence Ends Now."

At 10am, The City of West Hollywood is hosting a One Billion Rising Kick-Off Event. Members of the West Hollywood City Council will participate, as well as representatives from V-Day/One Billion Rising, including V-Board Member, Jane Fonda.

In addition, dancers from Flash Mob America will lead a special One Billion Rising dance, choreographed by the iconic dancer, actress and choreographer, Debbie Allen. There's a rehearsal on Wednesday in West Hollywood. www.onebillionrising.org/page/event/detail/startarising/4jjtv.

At 12 noon, at Broadway and 3rd in Santa Monica, you’re welcome to practice the dance steps to “Break the Chain,’ by dancing from Arizona and 3rd and back to 3rd and Broadway. They’ll start down Main Street to Venice, make a left on Abbott Kinney, turn right to the Windward Venice Circle, arriving at 2 pm. You can meet up with them along the route and return to your car via the Big Blue Bus.

At 6pm you’re encouraged to join One Billion Rising in the call to stop violence against women as they dance at LA Live's Nokia Plaza in downtown Los Angeles. Flash mobs, celebrity speakers...and More!  

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