Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Don’t Cry for Me Argentina…

The other major update about Truman and one that I still don’t know how I feel about came from the eye doctor.  We took Truman in to make sure his vision was OK.  Sometimes balance issues and other delays can be caused by poor vision.  We also realized over a year ago that Tru didn’t cry tears.  He is a happy dude and doesn’t really fuss much anyway but when he did there was never a tear.  His eyes watered when he coughed or had crap coming out of his nose but he never had that big tear slide down his face that makes us all giggle.

The good news was that Truman has perfect vision.

The bad news is that the doctor is 99% sure that he was born without the “response tear gland.” 

Apparently there is a gland above your eye that fills with tears that come from an emotional response.  The gland as it fills has overflow that comes out of the eye and we call tears.  He told us that 2-4% of the population is born without the gland.

He told me that Truman will never cry tears.

Truman will not cry at a sappy movie, on his wedding day or when his child is born. He will never laugh so hard that he cries or put on a show of tears to get away with something.  He won’t cry when someone he loves passes away or breaks his heart.  He will never know how cleansing it can be to just let it all go and sob.  He will never experience the salty taste when his lips are coated with tears during a moment of pure sadness or joy.

I don’t know why this one has been so hard on me.  Maybe because it is so real.  So permanent. 

Because we don’t have a final diagnosis at this point I still can imagine that he is going to “grow out of it.”  It is still very possible that Truman will eventually catch up or at least get close and we will all breathe big sigh of relief.  Part of that is the assumption that he will grown to get married or have a child, have his heart broken and laugh uncontrollably.   But the truth is…we don’t know if that will happen.  At this point so much is unknown so it is much easier to imagine a “normal” life than anything else.

But this was a “never” moment.  And all of it really crashed down for a bit.  It still really hasn’t sunk in.  And I know it sounds a bit crazy to get so upset over such a relatively small thing.  But I come from a family of criers.  We cry at everything.  Dog food commercials, sappy songs, beautiful sunsets, funny stories…we are big with the tears.  I can’t watch Extreme Home Makeover because I literally boo-hoo from beginning to end. 

Will people think he is hard hearted or soulless when they realize they have never seen him cry?  I know it is sexist but I guess it is better that he is a boy since big boys don’t cry and all that crap.  (Don’t tell my Dad that…he is worse than all of us put together!)

Tears are a big deal.  Having to face a big reality is bigger.  Hiding in my closet so I don’t have to deal?  Possible.   


  1. Not having tears doesn't equal not having emotions or the ability to express them in profound or sincere or meaningful ways! There is no way that anyone who spends more than two minutes in Truman's smiling, giggling presence, or talked to him and looked into his beautiful, inquisitive, engaged little face as he listens could ever think he was unfeeling or insensitive or anything like that. What's a little salt water? He is such a little ray of sunshine and sweetness and lovable, rambunctious little boy-ness that I bet no one will ever even notice.

  2. I get it - how this was a "never" moment and how much different that must feel from the uncertainty. But I imagine that Tru will still cry, tearlessly but physically, especially with you sappy Booths around... ;)