Cry When You Are Sad

Cry When You Are Sad

From Chicken Soup for the Preteen Soul

Cry When You Are Sad

Never apologize for showing feelings. Remember that when you do, you apologize for the truth.

Benjamin Disraeli

On a sunny Monday in April, I had two loving grandmothers near me, but when Tuesday came, only one was left. One of my grandmothers who was dear to me, had died. I had a feeling that this awful day was going to come soon, but now that it was here, all I wanted to do was cry. But I wasn’t brave enough to shed a tear, for I was always taught that boys should never cry.

Later, as the time came for the funeral activities, I had the hardest time keeping my sadness inside.

My relatives soon arrived from all over the country. I really had to hold back my tears now that my relatives were here, because I did not want to look like a crybaby in front of them. I figured out that my parents, my sister and myself were the only ones that had lived in the same town as my grandma. That explained why her death was hitting me the hardest, while my cousins seemed as though they were here just to get away from home. They really hadn’t known her like I had.

Soon, all of my relatives gathered at the funeral home, waiting for the viewing to begin. What I thought was going to be the easiest part of my grieving turned into the hardest.

The moment I walked into the room where my grandma was laying in a coffin, my heart dropped. This was going to be the last time that I would ever see her. At first I was afraid to proceed with the rest of my family up to her coffin, but then I realized that I would have to sooner or later. I grabbed hold of my mother’s hand and kept my mind on remembering not to cry.

When I came up to the kneeler, in front of where she was laying, my mother made me do something that almost brought me to tears. She told me to touch Grandma’s hand, for that was going to be the last time that I would get a chance to touch her. I reached over to her hand very slowly, afraid of what she might feel like. When my hand touched hers, I was relieved for a moment. She felt the same way she always had, except a little cooler than usual.

When I looked up at my mom, she began crying uncontrollably. I knew this was the time that I really had to be strong. I reached my arms around her and slowly walked with her back to our seats.

During the next few hours, I met many different people. All of them were telling me that they were sorry about my grandma passing away. I just smiled and reminded myself not to cry, because I had so often been told, “Boys should be strong and not cry.” I kept reminding myself that soon this night would be over, but the next day would be the actual funeral . . . the last good-bye.

My mother woke me early the next morning, making sure that I looked my best. I promised myself when I was getting dressed that I would hold back my tears no matter what. I had to be strong and help my grieving parents.

When we arrived at the church, we all waited as they took my grandma’s coffin out of the big black hearse. We had to follow it in so everyone knew that we were family. Once inside, we took our seats. My family sat in the very front because we were the closest to my grandma. I was surprised to see that even before the service began, my parents were crying. I was trying to hold back my tears, but as the priest began talking about my grandma, it seemed as though not crying was going to be an impossible task.

About halfway through the mass, he began telling the people about how much my grandma was loved by her family and friends. He then mentioned how every night I stayed with her while my parents were working. That reminded me of all of the good times we had together throughout my life. In the summer, we would glide on her swing. In the winter, we would always ride sleds down the big hill behind her house. There were so many good times that went through my mind that I almost forgot where I was. I began to realize that those good times were gone forever. At this exact thought, I began to cry uncontrollably. I didn’t care anymore about what other people thought of me. It was something that I just had to do. I could not hold back my sadness anymore.

When my father noticed me sobbing, he leaned me up next to him and we cried together. My father, my mother, my sister and I sat next to each other, crying as if the world was going to end. At this point I promised to myself that if I ever had a son, I would tell him: “Real boys show emotions. Cry when you are sad, and smile when you are happy.” This was the last time I would say good-bye to my grandmother, but I was a better person for letting my tears show everyone just how much I loved her.

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