I cry during movies.
There. I admitted it.
Not the “tears rolling down my face, choking on every breath” sobbing one may think I mean … well, the “choking on every breath” part is correct when the tone of a movie brings it on.
And it’s only getting worse as I age.
MY FIANCE LOVES to give me a hard time about this. She comes from a “rough and tumble” family in the South. Men are “men” and women cry and do dishes. Both vote for Donald Trump … that sort of mindset. She has always labeled me as “sensitive” and told me I wear my heart on my sleeve because I do. I get very angry while watching football, become all “hyped up” when victims are victimized and cry when something makes me sad or – believe it or not – overly happy.
I can picture her in my mind, right now, laughing at me from her recliner as we watch a movie and interrogating rhetorically, “are you crying?”
Yes, I am crying, I’ll think but not say. I can’t help it.
TO BE HONEST, also, I don’t care what anyone thinks about this. I work every day to support my family so she can stay home and take care of the kids, I change oil myself and would not be caught dead trusting another person to mow our lawn. I also hunt, love power tools and would enjoy having a truck, but it’s just not practical for all of these kids we have to tote around. Clearly, I am not a sissy. However, I do cry and am not afraid to admit it because, frankly, there is no denying it.
So tonight, as I found myself crying, once again, this time as I watched “Cinderella” (not the animated version, but the new one by Disney) with my daughter, I remembered crying is just what I do.
But why? Why tonight, over a movie I knew would end EXACTLY how it did?
Because – and here’s the crux of this post – I’ve had an experience in life that reminds me EXACTLY of this movie. “Cinderella,” according to this latest version from Disney, was raised by her father following the death of her mother. Cinderella carried with her for the rest of her life lessons taught to her, directly and indirectly, by her mother and father and blossomed into someone truly beautiful. That is EXACTLY what I want for my own daughter.
I DID CRY when she finally met the prince and presented her true self to him at the end of the movie, even though I knew that would ultimately happen. It made me think of her parents, who were both likely looking down from Heaven proud of what she’d become – a woman of ideals and perseverance in the face of insurmountable adversity. If I were dead, that’s what I’d want to see of my children.
But had I never had a daughter or spent time with her as a single father or experienced the blessing that is being a parent in general, I never would have watched this movie at all or certainly cried over it. Life gave me the blessing that is the chance to be a father … and for that, I find story lines similar to “Cinderella” something beautiful.
As life goes on and presents me with more unique, challenging and rewarding experiences, I find myself striking a chord with more movies, books and others’ experiences … and if these make me cry, so be it.
I am okay with that.