I watched a movie yesterday afternoon because it was too stinking hot to do anything outside. Flipping through the channels, I saw that "A League of Their Own" was on. I've only seen this movie once, but the best line of the movie is when Tom Hanks says, "There's no crying in baseball!" What a 1992 gem!
It's a great line! It's been used by the trainers at my gym, after they made me do pull-ups once, and I cried. (Have you ever tried to do pull-ups? They're really hard!) "There's no crying at the gym!" It's been used by my husband at the office when someone has a breakdown. "There's no crying at the office!" It can apply to so many situations, so there are many opportunities to pull it out.
The problem is, I'm a crier. You can count on me to cry at any cry-worthy opportunity. But I'm not a bawler, like the girl in the clip, I'm a tearer-upper. Tears will stream down my face if I know I won't see my kids for an extended period of time. They pop up when I think about when my kids were little babies. They definitely made a cameo appearance when I dropped my two oldest kids off at college, and again when I have to say goodbye after a long Thanksgiving holiday break. Oh, and again after the even longer Christmas break. The people that make tear-worthy movie scenes, it definitely works on me. Here's me with Luke after I finished my first and only marathon, and I'm crying.
So this morning, during my early morning run, some stupid Alanis Morissette song came on, and it ALMOST made me cry. So I pull out the old stand-by, "There's no crying in running!" But then, when I thought about it, I really have to take issue with that statement because there IS crying in running. The tears did not spring forth this morning, because I pushed them back down. I swallowed the lump in my throat that started to form, because if I didn't, I would've had to stop running, and I was so close to home.
You have to understand that during my runs, I start off pathetic and unwilling. The first few minutes I try to justify turning around, going home, and crawling back into bed. I've waited too long, it's too hot (cold, windy, rainy) already, I'm never going to make it, why did you take up this sport anyway? This litany of put-downs runs through my head almost every time. Then after the first half mile or so, I've decided that I will not, in fact, turn around, and will continue. After that decision is made, I then I start to feel pretty good because I'm running (Running! Me!) at 6 a.m. and everyone else is probably still sleeping. I make my turnaround, and now I'm really feeling totally awesome (Maybe I'll go a little further today than I'm supposed to, that's how good I feel right now!) and in total rock star mode. Ideas are running through my head like crazy, inspirations popping up left and right, I am going to do so much today!
Then the stupid song came on and threatened to wash away all those good feelings. Noooooo! There have been plenty of times that I have cried during runs, and while it doesn't feel good at the time, those tears represent a physical or emotional barrier that I've probably broken, whether it's in miles, time or just being out there in tough conditions. I remember one 16-miler in particular where it was so hot, I was jumping through every sprinkler that was on, cramping up like crazy, almost being run over by a 6-year old out-of-control bike rider, and finally breaking down and walking, emotionally and physically spent. Problem is, I was still many miles from home and I had to get back. I wallowed in my "poor me" film running through my head for longer than I should have, then I picked myself up, and started running again and got myself home.
It's never easy to get through the tears as they're happening, but when you do come out on the other side, it's like you've earned a badge of honor, a notch on the belt, total bragging rights. Days, weeks, months later, when you have to call up that courage, you know it'll be there because of what you went through. As painful as the tears may be, I know that they have created tough little callouses in me, making me stronger in ways I can't even fathom yet, and I know I'll be able to handle that much more because I got myself through what I felt was the most difficult situation.
Are you an easy crier?
Do you prefer to go around quoting movie lines or songs?
What inspires you?