The Better Tears

Tears seem to be our emotional register.  They are the nemesis of laughter.  They are ever-present, just off to the side, hidden within the shadows of our joy, and waiting anxiously to see if we need them.  They are at our beck and call, knowing that at some point we will call upon them, and they will unleash themselves, and tears will flow.

Tears are like writers or artists in that they bring an accent of emotion and color to the story we tell, the story we live.  Tears live within the laughter and sorrows of our life making what we do and feel more believable to others.  I wonder are all tears the same.  Are the tears of joy the same tears we cry when we are hurt or feel pain?

It could be said that tears can be measured as great bringers of sorrow while other tears hardly impact us, like tears of laughter or a sad song.  We often hold back our tears exiling them to a place beyond emotions, a place where pain is frozen without feeling.  People may think we too are cold and without feeling and these would be the forgotten tears, tears that we can not cry.

Then there are the good tears the tears we cry for others.  They can be filled with joy showing those you cry for that you care and share their joy.  You can cry good tears and still feel a sadness because these tears are for someone you lost that held great meaning or love for you.  You honor them with good tears.

Tears are like stars in the night sky in that they are abundant and have many diverse purposes.  Just because we cry doesn’t mean we need comfort; maybe, it is just what we need to do for a while then we move on.  Tears and laughter are not so dissimilar as we might think.

Point Of View

The last year that my mother was alive she came to live with me, and I really got to see who she was.  She was a funny person who laughed easily and always wore a smile that made her blue eyes sparkle.  When the caregivers came over, she was always more concerned about how they were than how she was doing.  She would ask about their kids or how a date went, and she always wanted to feed them.  When Mom passed it was in the summer and she had asked me to tell everyone not to wear suits but to wear summer clothing because it was too hot.  She always cared more about other people than her own self.

I never cried when Momma died.  I felt that she deserved a better tear than I could shed.  I waited for a better tear, one that would honor her for the kind and caring person that she was, but I never cried that tear.  I never could find the tear that was as pure, kind and unselfish as she was, and I still hope that one day I will find that better tear.


Larry Tyler
Larry Tyler
Awaken the possibilities … then unleash them. After 55 years of successful retail management, I have returned to my passion of writing. I write Poetry, Storytelling, and Short Stories. As a child, I grew up on front porch storytelling. I would sit and listen to my Dad and his brothers tell these great stories that were captivating, and I always wanted to hear more. I wanted to experience the things they talked about. I started writing at a young age and reading everything I could get my hands on. At twelve years old I started a storytelling group and several of my friends became writers or poets. At 16 I hopped box cars and worked the tobacco fields, orange groves, picked cotton, and spent many nights around a campfire listing to life stories. Someone once asked me why I wrote. It consumes an amazing amount of time and I assure you it is not going to make me rich. I write so that my children can touch and feel my words telling of the ones that came before us and the stories they told me. These are the chronicles of our family and even though they come from my childhood memories and are deeply rooted in a child’s remembrance at least they may feel what it was like in the time before them and cherish the things the elders left behind. I am a Columnist & Featured Contributor, BIZCATALYST360 and I have The Writers Café, a group on LinkedIn that features Poets, Writers, Artists, Photographers, and Musicians . On Facebook I have two groups and one page; Dirt Road Storytelling, From Abandoned To Rescue Dogs And Cats, and About Life, Love And Living. As writers, it is true that we honestly do not know what we hold within us until we unleash it. When our words inspire others only then will inspiration return to the writer. I will spend my twilight years in search of the next story, the next poem, and the next image. I will take the time to enjoy my Wife, our Dogs, and Cats, and our amazing new home and I will always find the time to walk down a dirt road I truly hope is that I never have to read another book on Leadership, be on a conference call or see another plan o gram as these were the tool for what I did in life and not about who I am.

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  1. Larry, you cried! You felt the pain of your mother’s passing. Each of us reacts to death in a different way. There always seem to be regrets from things you wanted to say but did not and so forth. Cry as much and as often as you need to no matter how long it has been since your mother passed. Every tear you shed is a good tear. Look up toward heaven and talk to your mother. This is an emotional story that resonates within all of us.

  2. Oh, what a beautiful article that lives so close to many of our experiences of being alive, Larry Tyler. As someone who cries easily for many of the reasons you’ve shared, I have noticed over my lifetime that tears are often not welcome by others. They seem to hold a vulnerability that some others are unwilling to embrace. These tears openly shed in all different situations seem to be the ones that others struggle to shed from inside their own worlds. i used to feel defensive or ashamed of these easily shed tears. Lately I know I can embrace them without judgment of others or myself. How others choose to relate to their own tears remains their unique and beautiful inner dance of their hearts. Sometimes we surprise ourselves at the moments we simply do not shed tears, even if its a “better tear.” Thank you so much for this poignant and meaningful article.

  3. Tears are the way we clense the palette, release the pain of ones soul and build courage within the spirit. Tears allow us to breathe once again when being suffocated by the loss of one loved and wash the sorrow from the heart.