It surprises many people to know that I am a big crier. Beyond this wise cracking facade, I can be, as my mother likes to put it, an Emotional Wreck. While I cry at movies quite often, The Passion of Christ, Joy Luck Club, and Marley & Me, are a trifecta that brings about The Ugly Cry. Throughout my life, I’ve shed tears when I’m about to get punished and when I’ve gotten away with murder, when some boy told me he didn’t love me and when another told me he did, at my grandmother’s funeral and pretty much whenever anyone talks about her, when the goddaughter runs toward me with a hug, and when she’s not in the mood. I cry when I’m happy, sad, mad, glad, etc.
So yes,I have a bad case of the waterworks. It is my handicap, and I hate it. Growing up, my mom always said, “Don’t ever get a boyfriend. Because you will be crying for the rest of your life.” No one else in my immediate family has this issue. I only saw my Dad cry once, and with Mom, it is a rare occasion. Just the other day, she watched ‘The Notebook’ for the first time and didn’t shed a single tear. The only movie that gets to her is the funeral scene in ‘Imitation of Life.’
Recently, we learned that my grandpa is dealing with a terminal lung disease. There is not much doctors can do, other than keep him comfortable. He doesn’t have the best of relationships with his children, since he abandoned the family years ago and recent news of other children hasn’t helped much, but we grandkids check in from time to time. He’s in good spirits, despite everything.
Somebody thought it would be a good idea to ask him why he bailed out on grandma all those years ago. Somebody also thought it would be a good idea to have a person ask him a series of questions and record the response. Guess who was nominated? I was never asked directly, but I heard through the grapevine that my aunt wants me to do it. “I’d do it myself, but I’d get too emotional.” My mom outed me as the Emotional Wreck that I am, and volunteered to do the task. She offered to get straight Barbara Walters with it: “The day you left your family, and we had no food to eat, and barely any clothes on our backs, how did you feel?” Sigh. Nothing good can come from this.