I am a crier. I cry when I’m happy, I cry when I’m sad, I am the kind of person who cries at sloths. I cry when other people look lonely — really, it happened just last week at a restaurant — and I cry when I am excited to see people. I cry whenever that fucking Sarah McLachlan SPCA commercial pops on. I am a crier, and that is okay. However, I don’t like crying in public when I am genuinely upset: it’s awkward, bizarre and makes other people uncomfortable.

Yesterday, I flew from Portland to Orlando, Florida to meet up with my brother, his fiancee and my 7-year-old nephew for his first time in DisneyWorld. Long story short, the day involved: getting my period early on the plane, getting so sick as a result that I threw up for four hours on said plane, people thinking I was going through drug withdrawals, finding out my nephew was in the hospital when I got off the plane and realizing his memories of the first few days on this special vacation would be embedded with images of doctors and hospitals.

After finding this out, I began fighting off the urge to cry. I was standing outside the airport, waiting for my brother to pick me up so we could go to the hospital and I just sort of lost it. My eyes leaked and my lip quivered, and I felt myself so close to just sitting down and burying my face in my hands. But I remembered to think all the things that help me not cry, and I was able to taper off by the time the car pulled up. I still leaked a little bit, but it was much better than the sobfest it could’ve been.

There is a time and a place to cry, after all, but when you’re not in it, perhaps some of these things can assist you in stopping.