"Big girls don't cry."
I spat it out. A reply to a taunt. An answer in place of the one I refused to give. I meant it.
If someone could make me cry I'd feel like they'd won. They'd feel like they'd won. I'd feel weak. I learned to hate crying. Something I never was very good at and something I never did often. I forgot how. I tried to learn to clench my jaw instead. To pound with words well I'd defy the tears.
I'm not sure where I got this from. Society, probably. From a personality that told me I had to always be strong. I'm just not sure what it is about tears that we consider so weak. It's an emotional reaction, isn't it? Why is a natural display of our emotion something to hide?
I still hate crying. I think that's so deeply ingrained it will never change. People who know me can immediately tell you if they've ever seen me cry. It's memorable. Awkward, ugly, uncomfortable. And vulnerable.
I hate feeling vulnerable.
But if I'm going to cry then I still can't stop myself. When my re-channeling doesn't work my eyes well up, my chin quivers and there's not a freaking thing I can do about it.
Big girls don't cry. I'll get there someday.