(Note: This essay is based on the following prompt from the online publication http://www.TheCreative.cafe
Crying is all right in its way while it lasts.
But you have to stop sooner or later,
and then you still have to
decide what to do.”
– CS Lewis,
The Silver Chair)
My tears are perpetually conceived in my soul.
I know there were periods in my past where crying was not a daily event (one exception being the torturous years of adolescence where crying daily was mandatory). However, I don’t seem to have any conscious memory of those times. I know they existed because I remember being in awe of the fact that there were no tears one random day. Or the next. But at this juncture, I simply don’t remember a time that existed which didn’t consistently deliver feelings of enough sadness as to cause me to well up. Because that is my life today. That’s all I know.
I know that in other times, entire days would pass without sadness. Sometimes several days. Maybe even weeks. No sadness, no frustration, no hopelessness. No tears. I don’t know why. I mean, I certainly could speculate. Life was good. Life was new and exciting and positive and joyful and different. And I just have this memory of not crying on a daily basis. I long for those days. I wish I knew how to get them back. But again, I don’t know how they started. I just know that those days are gone. That seemingly brief respite from constant pain and sadness is over and I’m back to the familiar, vaguely comforting, daily despondence of my true self. The one that cries every day.
Every teardrop that develops begins somewhere deep inside my soul. And every time I cry I can palpably feel a part of my soul fill up my eyes with the blindness that those first tears bring, then they drop, almost like a raindrop, onto my plump cheeks, and fork off like creeks in different directions, continuing their downward trajectory, gliding past my nose, sometimes dripping into my ears, over my lips, and finally falling off my jaw into God knows what abyss is available to catch them. Maybe into a tissue, to be discarded once dampened beyond use. This tissue, carrying pieces of my soul, thrown into the trash.
Or, barring any method of removal, the tears drop off my jaw and trickle down my neck, gravitate towards my chest, and on and on it goes. Because invariably, I’m still crying. My soul continues to manufacture the tears which follow the same path, essentially threatening death by drowning.
I suppose, eventually, I am able to pull myself together, if only for a short time, and clean myself up. No doubt a lot of the tears have dried onto my skin-is there any hope that they will be absorbed back into my soul for recycling? Or, like the soggy tissue, are they lost forever? And am I doomed to ultimately be rendered soulless? Because that’s how it feels. Every day, every instance of crying throughout the day, and I assure you, it is every single day, I am convinced that I am losing parts of my soul. I am sure that I have become less of myself. I am empty, I am void of positivity, I am losing this battle.
I don’t know what the depth of my soul is; I don’t know the percentage I have lost or what I have left. I don’t know if the soul regenerates. I don’t know any of those things. I just know that I’m feeling more depleted, more hollow, and more obsolete every day. I used to be somebody. I formerly was overflowing with offerings and gifts and genuineness. I was relevant, I was valid. I made people happy, which was where I found my own happiness. But that’s all gone now. I now am only left to burden others with my sadness, my constant tears.
I’ve lost my soul and I’ve lost myself and I no longer exist. And I cry every day, for the loss.