Saturday, November 08, 2008

The Daily "Moved to Tears" Moment™

I don't know about you, but ever since Tuesday, I have been having a Daily "Moved to Tears" Moment™. Usually several such moments, in fact.

Just now, it was spurred by Judith Warner's latest NYT post. Colin Powell being puffy-faced and moved. A beautiful photo of a little girl with her sobbing mother in a Harlem church, which Warner said looked like the future reaching out to heal the past.

Other days, it's been various photos of the Grant Park rally or of Americans crying tears of joy and relief. Heck, even billionaire Oprah Winfrey was overcome to the point that she cried on a stranger's shoulder. Jesse Jackson atoned for his ill-advised remarks this summer with his tears. And thousands of people who weren't famous, people of all races and backgrounds, people around the world, have experienced such joy.

On Election Day, there were tales of people voting with their parents or grandparents in mind—forebears who lived through the Jim Crow era and could scarcely have believed their descendants would be voting a black man into the highest office in the land. People who had never registered to vote before because they didn't think their vote mattered, and now they know it does.

It's seeing children of all colors and knowing that their America is not our America. Their America is the place where, duh, of course we can have a president who's not white. It's children aspiring to make history in their own way, dreaming of becoming the first Asian-American president or the second black president or the first woman president or the first Latina/Latino president or the first Jewish president. The possibilities seem endless in a way they never did before.

My Daily "Moved to Tears" Moment™ didn't happen until after lunch today. I suppose soon enough I'll make it to the end of the day without crying, but in the meantime, I rather like the daily cryfest. So hey! Let's keep it going:

What's moved you the most?

8 comments:

Sara said...

Moved to tears moment(s): O Hare airport, Nov 5

Helping the German guy search through every newsstand in the airport for a Chicago Tribune to bring home to his family to remember "this wonderful election of the US!"

Talking with a 60ish-year old white man and a 30ish or so black man, and having them both agree that the best thing about the Grant Park rally was the air of "serene euphoria."

Anonymous said...

My grandson was two months old when we invaded Iraq in March of 2003. I have felt so bad that this has been the world first he, and then my year-old granddaughter, have come into.

Tuesday night was the first time I've been able to feel that there may be hope for different kind of world for them to grow up in. And that moves me to tears.

Jessie

LetterB said...

Today it was thinking about the first puppy. Seriously.

I have been blaming it on PMS because my daily moved to tears moment is more like my hourly moved to tears moment. But I am so goddamned happy I don't care.

flea said...

I've been crying almost non-stop. I'm crying right now after reading the Judith Warner essay. This is the best news I've had in such a long time.

And the best part is - he gets sworn in on the day before my birthday!

Feral Mom said...

Anytime I hear "president elect Barack Obama" the faucet starts running. And when I hear my girls say "Obama is the president. He has the hope."

So do I. The hope, it is good.

Mignon said...

I thought I would finally be used to it today, and then there was a story in our local paper this morning about the Sunday sermons in the churches around Chicago. About the older women crying and remembering being kicked out of department stores and spit on by white men when they were kids. And looking at the President Elect and crying, "He looks like me!"

And the First Dog. From the pound, of course.

E. said...

Ditto on what Jessie said. Those grandkids are my kids, and I feel the same way. The fact that the Iraq war has been going on for O's whole life just devastates me, and though I know Obama can't just wave his hand and make that quagmire disappear, I believe that he's committed to trying to end it as soon and as responsibly as we can.

But it was Jessie Jackson openly weeping that sent me from verklempt to bawling. And hearing the words "President Obama," at this point that still gets me pretty much every time.

Narya said...

I am not as lachrymose as y'all, I have to say--but then, I remember when JFK was shot (and RFK and MLK), and I remember Watergate and Nixon's resignation, and Viet Nam, and even the '68 convention. My point is that this is, indeed, a big deal, and, as I've said to a few people, it will be extremely nice to have someone in the White House who can speak in complete sentences and use polysyllabic words without a cue card or TelePrompter. A smart person! what a concept!

But to me it feels a lot like it did when Jimmy Carter was elected--a relief that there was going to be someone in charge who wasn't a lying, thieving, paranoid, secretive asshole. I also remember listening on the radio to Carter being sworn in and then he and Rosalyn walked to the White House, which I thought was extremely cool. It felt like a breath of openness after so much dark paranoia.