Tears, What are Those?

It is 12:15 a.m. Japanese Time. Or, 00:15 according to my computer. I’ve been forced to use to military time here, but I refuse to conform.

I also just worked for 13 hours. Due to today’s events, I feel a bit exhausted, a lot bitchy, and entirely inspired to write about it.

Although, in 12 hours I will lose the only free wifi I’ve had access to for the last three days, and I must postpone that rant for another day.

A day that I finally go insane from the inability to catch up on episodes of Bachelor in Paradise and decide to break into my Japanese neighbour’s home in search of their wifi password. Gomenasai. Gomenasai.

I’ve decided to base this post off of a post I drafted two weeks ago, while sitting alone in an airport in Toronto as I impressively cried for two hours to the beat of “No Letting Go” by Wayne Wonder — on repeat.

I have it on repeat now because it gets me in the mood.

I now refer to the day I moved to Japan as either the best or worst day of my life. I’ve still yet to decide which it is. Hopefully, I will one day be thankful for making the decision. Though at this moment, it feels like a mistake. I’ve left a lot of people back home, but the wise words of Wayne Wonder have offered me some solace:

They say good things must come to an end
But I’m optimistic about being your friend
Though I made you cry by my doings
With Keisha and Anisha but that
Was back then

I don’t know any Keishas or Anishas, but when in doubt, it’s their fault.

So, back to me crying alone in the airport.

If you are wondering if I realise how ridiculous I must have looked to everyone who witnessed the Greek tragedy that is my life, then wonder no more. I am fully aware of how ridiculous I looked. The tiny Japanese children who kept staring at me were also fully aware of how ridiculous I looked. The woman who was trying to discreetly eat an ear of corn in the corner of the terminal also noticed how ridiculous I looked.

My unstable emotions even left me too unmotivated crippled to walk the entire ten feet to the men’s restroom to blow my nose. Instead, all I could muster was enough strength to take a picture of the sign pointing to it.

Told you.

Normally, I have to be seven beers deep just to shed a handful of tears. Just ask my parents. I don’t think any of us will forget that night…Oy.

So, the fact that I was crying SO much is strange to me. The fact that it was in public is even odder. I’m usually pretty closed off when it comes to emotions. So much so, that my cousins have even given me a really cute pet name. What was it again? Oh yea, sociopath. Isn’t that darling?

What’s strangest, though, is that this wasn’t the first time I cried that week.

  1. A few nights before, I tragically sobbed through the streets of Chicago as my friend attempted to console me while I called my parents.(Although this cry was incredibly justified, I must say.)
  2. I also spent a night tragically sobbing to my neighbours because I was staying with them, and I just had to many feelings to deal.
  3. I then spent the following night tragically tearing up because I couldn’t fall asleep, and it was my last night in America.
  4. I also cried tragically on my drive to the airport five hours later.
  5. Finally, I unsuccessfully stifled my tears as I waited in airport lines for an hour because there were too many people and not enough staff.
  6. But, not after I cried at the security guards when I had to explain the importance of my extensive essential oil collection to them.

I haven’t cried since the plane ride from Toronto to Tokyo, but a part of me is hoping that this is not the end of my softer side. Even though I was in total despair and you should feel really bad for me, it felt weirdly good to experience my sadness and release it at unsuspecting bystanders.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, my therapists are right. Vulnerability can be a good thing.



12 thoughts on “Tears, What are Those?”

  1. So glad you survived so far. Heard about CHI. That which doesn’t kill you makes you stronger….or homicidal lol. Love you nephew and am proud of your adventurous nature. You got this!

  2. I have never left Canada to live somewhere else, but if I did, I’m sure I would be terrified. I think what you are doing takes guts 🙂 Looking forward to future posts! And some pictures from your adventures!

  3. OMolympianGods…this is the best piece I’ve read from you to date…you’re an emotional GREEK MAN to your core!!!!! AND I HAVENT HAD THE PLEASURE TO MEET YOU YET>>>Where do i fly to meet you? Or when u decide to come back to states, pit stop in NYC…but only after you’ve experienced the Japanese Fashion Scene as well. U know how to reach me…looking forward.
    PS: You better start copyrighting all of your work until you publish them as an essay – look what our other GREEK brother, DAVID SEDARIS did.
    So, now in the words of the High-Priestess of pop, CHER, “Save Up All Your Tears!”

  4. Ah yes, tears! They mark painful endings and scary beginnings. They help us release buried feelings so we can work through them and become healthy again! Bravo to you Phil for working on your pain in public…not easy – not pretty – but for some of us, very necessary. I love you to Japan and back 🚻

  5. —Beautiful, honest, gorgeous post.
    Crying cleanses the soul, darling.
    It releases the fear and darkness and anxiety.
    Nothing is truly the end….only the beginning.
    And you have so many beginnings left!
    I LOooooVE how you can express yourself.
    Also, did you know that women like this, too?
    Just sayin’

    Love from MN. x

  6. I’m sorry you had to cry in an airport. Also sorry you had to explain yourself and your oil collection. Thank you for reminding me about bachelor in paradise because HOLY JARED. Get wifi soon.

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