All the parents had dropped off their kids--hugging and kissing them goodbye, wishing them well, saying things like, "Don't forget your backpack," and "Have a great day!" The buses had left, the bell had rang, the parking lot had cleared out. And still, I sat there. In my dirty Chevy Blazer. Wearing a baggy t-shirt and my old hat.
I cried. And I'm not talking about a few gentle tears streaming down my cheeks, either! I'm not talking about a lip quiver and a sniffy sniffle. I full on busted out "the ugly cry." I bawled and bawled. Tears gushing! Face blotching! Snot running! Gasping hiccups and closed-off throat and swollen eyelids! Essentially, a "face melting" experience comparable to the one that dude had in the Indiana Jones movie. (You know, because he "chose poorly.")
When my tear ducts were finished purging some of the emotional load I had been carrying, I did the only thing I could do. I blew my nose and wiped my face...then I went to Ross. I bought new shoes.
I bought these too.
As I left the store, I realized the "face melting," breakdown had been cathartic; the release, cleansing. I felt better. Sure, I was tired and drained, but I also knew that I was going to be okay. I had a renewed desire to face my day (and it's challenges) head on. My feet were going to look pretty while doing it.
Tears and shoes can be really good things.