Tears are the waters of truth. As in labour, they flow to ease delivery. 

Truth will out; to stifle it completely means a death. Arriving, it pains; abandoned, it dies. Protected, it has a chance. It will teach those who receive it what they need to know to raise it up. Truth transforms.

Truth is so strong. Even the worst parents produce miracles, while the best parents release into the world something steady and ready to repeat itself. Truth is also vulnerable, dependent as it is on cracked vessels to carry it. Despite our best efforts, it gets twisted, it frays. When the truth is that we’ve botched it, the tears are scalding, hot as fire. Bitter truths still bless our attention, though. When the blood is washed away and the broken body carefully wrapped, we will receive the same truth again, more softly, in a shower of sorrow.  

Therefore, respect tears, yours and other people’s. Respect them especially when they come in anger or relief, or inexplicably. Don’t suppress or ignore: interrogate. Pause the conversation and ask yourself — ask the weeper — calmly, curiously, without fear or haste: “Where are these tears coming from?” 

Spread your hands and prepare to catch the birth of truth.

Photo copyright LauraPeetoomWriterOnline, 2020

With thanks to Kathleen Sutcliffe, BA, MDiv, RMFT, RP, for asking the question.

3 thoughts on “Tears

  1. So good to read this more slowly. Today held one of those unexpected moments of tears and it was so necessary and welcomed.

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