I can’t produce tears on demand, but neither can I stop them at will. It is often quite inconvenient when they rise unbidden. Years ago, I found myself at a red light after having run errands which included a pick-up of library books for my children. I glanced through the opening words of Sarah, Plain and Tall, written for the 8-10 year old crowd, which explain that the father is bringing a mail-order bride to his home. Her arrival and the family’s adjustment to this Maine-bred woman provide the theme for a charming book. Quickly glossed over is the explanation that he needed a mother for his children as his wife had died in childbirth. I never got past that sentence at the stoplight and clearly that book is not what a mother in her ninth month of pregnancy should be reading. Crying while driving is not recommended.
Sometimes the spontaneous tears are those of joy. Like many of my friends, my tears often start streaming at hearing of the birth of a baby or even at sentimental and sappy commercials. A women’s bathroom at a wedding reception which lacks copious amounts of tissues available is simply not adequately prepared for its guests.