There’s this idea that men aren’t supposed to cry. We’re supposed to keep it in, and not show weakness. What we don’t realize is how much of a divide this creates between being a man, and being human.
Immersing myself in tears and letting myself feel, has been the most liberating thing I’ve gone through. But before it felt natural, it was filled with pain.
I’ll never forget when the doctor came into the room, and told us my Dad would never be responsive again. He had severe brain damage, and it was only a matter of time. Those weren’t the exact words, but this was all I heard. The nuances didn’t matter anymore.
I’ve never cried with such vulnerability, realizing that I’d never be able to talk to my Dad again. After almost three months of avoiding his calls and texts, I felt every bit of guilt I ever had. Seven years of talking almost every day, and somehow we drifted apart in the last months of his life.
I was broken.
It was the first time my tears took every ounce of energy from my body and soul. Like a part of me had died inside. A part that I could never find again, no matter how hard I looked.
Even with family and friends around, the pain of crying remained. But it wasn’t until the funeral that the tears went from painful to excruciating. Because it was now the end of saying goodbye. After this, everyone would go back to their lives, and this moment would become a memory. So I let everything out, feeling the Tasbi break in my hand, while an entire room of people watched me mourn.
For months I kept going back to that moment. And then I came across a quote while reading a book one afternoon.
“Vulnerability is the core, the heart, the center, of meaningful human experiences.” — Brené Brown
Those words gave new meaning to what I was feeling that day. And it was something more than excruciating pain. It was the act of allowing myself to feel, and to be hurt… To share my truth, and with everyone in the room.
That’s when crying, and being my most vulnerable self, became more powerful than anything I had ever experienced. Till today, it remains the most important thing to happen in my life.
Thanks Dad ❤️