Goethe has a famous quote about crying. He says, “If you’ve never cried while eating, you’ve never tasted life.” Anyone who’s cried into their food before knows exactly what he means. And anyone who cries into food most likely knows how important a good cry can be.

There is nothing like it. Nothing like opening the gates to the tidal wave of emotion that’s been banging against your soul all day. Nothing like finally reaching your safe space and letting all the pains of the day wash over you until they’re nothing but faint throbs.

Whether you’re at that point today or been there last week, you understand what a good quote about crying can mean. So for those who have experienced the deep pleasure of a good cry, these are for you:

“It’s human to struggle. It’s human to nurse a broken heart, to wonder if the pain will ever let up, to howl through your tears every once in a while. And the best, most redeeming exciting thing I can imagine, from the smashed-up, broken place I’ve been, is that something beautiful could blossom out of the wreckage. That’s the goal. And when we’re deep in the wreckage, I have to remind myself from time to time that it’s okay to cry. My friend Eve told me once that the ability to cry is a sign of health, because it means your body and your soul agree on something, and that what your soul is feeling, your body is responding to.”
—Shauna Niequist, Bittersweet

“I didn’t want my picture taken because I was going to cry. I didn’t know why I was going to cry, but I knew that if anybody spoke to me or looked at me too closely the tears would fly out of my eyes and the sobs would fly out of my throat and I’d cry for a week. I could feel the tears brimming and sloshing in me like water in a glass that is unsteady and too full.”
― Sylvia Plath

“Do not apologize for crying. Without this emotion, we are only robots.”
― Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love

“Weeping is not the same thing as crying. It takes your whole body to weep, and when it’s over, you feel like you don’t have any bones left to hold you up.”
― Sarah Ockler, Twenty Boy Summer

“I remember first learning that you can cry from any emotion, that emotions are chemical levels in your brain and your body is constantly trying to maintain equilibrium. so if one emotion sky rockets, that chemical becomes flagged and signals the tear duct to open as an exit to release that emotion packaged neatly within a tear. Everything made sense after learning that. That sudden stability of your emotions after crying. How crying is often accompanied by the inability to feel any other emotion in that precise moment. And it is especially beautiful knowing that it is even possible to experience so much beauty or love or happiness that your body literally can’t hold on to all of it. So what I’ve learned is that crying signifies that you are feeling as much as humanely possible and that is living to the fullest extent. So keep feeling and cry often and as much as needed.” -Unknown

“There you go…let it all slide out. Unhappiness can’t stick in a person’s soul when it’s slick with tears.”
― Shannon Hale, Princess Academy

“Do you know what I think about crying? I think some people have to learn to do it. But once you learn, once you know how to really cry, there’s nothing quite like it.”
— Anne Rice, Memnoch the Devil

“Last night I wept. I wept because the process by which I have become woman was painful. I wept because I was no longer a child with a child’s blind faith. I wept because my eyes were opened to reality….I wept because I could not believe anymore and I love to believe. I can still love passionately without believing. That means I love humanly. I wept because I have lost my pain and I am not yet accustomed to its absence.”
― Anaïs Nin, Henry and June: From “A Journal of Love”

“I have learned that when sadness comes to visit me, all I can do is say “I see you.” I spend some time with it, get up, and say goodbye. I don’t push it away, I own it. And because I own it, I let it go.”
– Carolina Zacaria

“Crying is how your body speaks when your mouth can’t explain the pain you feel.”
– Unknown

“Expect sadness like you expect rain. Both cleanse you.”
-Nayyirah Waheed

Founder of Words of Women

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The Book of Moods
How I Turned My Worst Emotions Into My Best Life

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