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The constriction in my throat

Updated: May 8, 2023

I should know this by now. I don’t know why I haven’t clued into this from the get-go. It happens often enough. I get this constricted feeling in my throat, and, silly me - I think maybe I’m getting COVID or something. Or maybe my thyroid is acting up. And then, often in a matter of moments, or some uncomfortable amount of time later, I’m crying. I’m definitely crying. And I realize: “Oh, it was that throat feeling that always happens when a cry is coming on.”


This time it was brought on by the memory of a conversation I had a couple of days ago with a young man at the print shop. He was personable and kind (and reminded me of my own son), and I found myself sending up a quick prayer asking to keep this young man (whom I don’t even know) safe and sound. Weird, right?


Well, everything is weird now, since I lost my son.


Maybe I’m not supposed to know ahead of time what the throat feeling is. I consider myself pretty self-aware, so maybe this knowledge is hiding itself from me on purpose. Maybe if I knew it, then I would try to stop the cry.


The cry is important. It’s healing. It’s almost always an ugly cry.


And I make sounds, too, sometimes, like moaning or... I don’t know what you would call it. I think they call it keening, but try saying that to someone who doesn’t know…(wacko)…


And even though it’s seriously ugly, I do feel better afterward. So I think that classifies it as a beautiful cry.


But this throat feeling/cry thing always surprises me. As if I would or could ever think that my times of crying are over. My times of crying will never be over. (Probably not the occasional screaming in the car, either.) I loved (and still love) him too much for my crying to ever end--but I guess the times in between will stretch out further. That’s what they tell me, the people who’ve gone before me in this. That’s what they tell me.


But I must warn you: don’t ask me what’s wrong if your throat starts to feel tight. I might say you could be getting a cold. That’s how much I know about it.


Thank God that He knows.

Supposedly--and I 100% believe it--He collects every tear in a bottle.


Let the tears roll, my sister. Let ‘em roll.



(originally posted on August 17, 2021)

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6 commenti


I'm reading The Covenant of Water and actually looked up "keening" last night. A fascinating book. Thanks for sharing your feelings and tears.

Mi piace

Most definitely a beautiful cry. No, I don't think we'll ever stop crying. And our bottles of tears will be industrial size. Thank you for this reminder Rita.

Mi piace

The thing about those tears, especially the ones that bubble up from some unknown source, quietly activated by some rogue subconscious memory, under the radar of our more composed, analytical mind, the thing is the honesty of these tears. For me, the tears act like a cleansing rain after a long hot summer. Like the monsoons we are experiencing now here in the desert Southwest, the storm rolls in fast, the sky opens and the rain (tears) falls hard making a lot of noise as it does so, accentuated with streaks (screams) of lightening. The honesty of the tears gets me closer to God, clears the path to communication with my boy. Sometimes I just feel so small, unable to…

Mi piace

As a friend of (several) grieving mothers, I try to make sure she knows that her tears won't make me feel uncomfortable or upset; I have my own tears from time to time (nothing like a mother's tears) that come from out of nowhere and it does feel better when the tears dry. Please don't ever think you have to hide or hold back any tears. As you say, 'Let 'em roll'.

Mi piace

Roberta Bazaldua
Roberta Bazaldua
17 ago 2021

Oh the tears...when I'm missing my granddaughter and trying to hide it from the world, let someone even try to be kind to me and I'm pouring tears. Sometimes in the middle of a meeting or watching TV or shopping, I will be hit with a memory of Erin's sweet smiling face and I'm losing it again. It's been just a year and I'm still struggling with the idea that she's not in this world any longer and I won't ever get a silly dinosaur text from her again.


I know there will come a time when my first gut reaction won't be to cry when I remember something we shared together. Right now that's not the case so …

Mi piace
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