SMALL TALK

By Tracy Chesney

Herald-Banner Staff



My mascara never stops running, so I’m blaming it on my mom.

You see, I inherited this certain trait from my mom called sensitivity. My mom cries at the drop of a hat, so I guess when the hat dropped I must have picked it up.

I cried for six weeks after my daughter started kindergarten; two months when my youngest son went to kindergarten; my daughter’s baptism; all my kids’ high school graduations; my college graduation and at my daughter’s wedding rehearsal.

If my mom wasn’t at theses events, I’d call her and tell her about them, and she’d cry with me.

When I got lost when I was in first grade, and the school had to send the police out to look for me, my mom was at home crying because her little girl was missing. That was almost 40 years ago, and my parents still cry to this day when they think about their little lost girl.

Of course, Mom cries whenever a family member has died, or she cries with me when one of my extended family members has died.

Which reminds me, my mom and I once killed off one of my uncles. She called me early one morning, crying hysterically over the phone saying that my Uncle Harvey just died. She and I started calling all our relatives to tell them of the recent death, and she was about to make the dreaded phone call to her mother-in-law telling her about her son’s death. Then she got a phone call saying he wasn’t dead, he had only had a heart attack.

So Mom and I laughed it off, which is how we relieve the stress of crying. Sometimes, we get to crying over the silliest things, that we get to laughing so hard that it leads to more crying. The cycle never ends.

This sensitivity business doesn’t stop, however, at family events. It extends to television and the movies. Mom can’t watch Steel Magnolias because the daughter dies of cancer. I can’t watch Schlinder’s List because the mother had to choose between which child to send off on a German train.

Which leads me to the most current episode. While watching a recent theatrical play, “Our Town,” I totally lost it. The main character in the movie had died giving birth to her second child, and she was talking to her dead relatives, not realizing that she was dead. Having no tissues on hand, I had to use my friend’s long sleeve shirt to wipe away the tears.

People often ask why I cry at everything, and I tell them — I’m a mom. Or sometimes, I just blame it on my mom.

By the way, Mom, you owe me some mascara, or maybe I’ll give you some mascara for Mother’s Day after you read this story.

Happy Mother’s Day to my mom who passed on a wonderful, yet tearful, trait to me.

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