I’ve never been one to cry over everything.
For most of my life I’ve cried only when absolutely necessary; weddings, funerals, sad Kevin Costner movies.
I like to tell people that I don’t feel very different after having a baby because besides the normal routine changes of becoming a mother, I’m still myself. I like the same things, listen to the same music, pursue the same dreams.
But the truth is, I have changed. For example, I no longer only use bathroom when I actually have to go (I’m just hiding). I’ve also become more fearful of others. Before Waylon, I was never scared walking in the city alone or worried about a creeper in the parking lot. Now I’m peering around every corner wondering, “Do you look like a baby snatcher?” I’ve even had a few embarrassing cases of thinking someone was in my house. A few nights ago I even went as far as waking up Austin out of a comatose sleep to check the downstairs (he was not pleased).
The biggest change, however, is the waterworks.
In the beginning, the tears were normal, hormonal! For months I walked around in a newborn haze, crying over his eyelashes and the smallness of his nose. I especially cried over the kindness of strangers or over other important things like being out of milk or finding a hair on my chin. Everything was very fragile, very dramatic.
A year later and nothing has changed. If anything, it’s grown worse. Now it all affects me; a documentary about sex trafficking, an old man helping me at the grocery store, the Olympics. My tears cannot be contained.
A few weeks ago my brother-in-law wrote to us from a relief project in South Africa. He told us about drop boxes for babies no one wants. It haunts me every day. No matter how hard I try to push it away, I see those babies lying there without a mother. I see their faces, I hear their cries. I feel their loneliness in my bones.
Something shifted the day Waylon was born. My heart became raw and never healed. Tears flow freely.
What about you? Are you prone to tears? Has motherhood changed the answer?