All those tales which have ended with: 'I nearly burst into tears' or 'and then I cried' have all been true, so it's not as if I could have forgotten about the times I've said such things, it's just .....
... I saw something last week which, you guessed it, made me cry and while my first thought was 'Oh, I should Tweet about that' I was surprised by my second thought which was 'What? Again?'.
And it began to dawn on me just quite how often I conclude a tale with such an admission! Then it all flooded in...
... the times I've mentioned crying in various 'About me' online lists and how often I've summarised work by my friend Jack with the phrase 'It made me cry'. Granted, it's not the only feedback I've ever given him but still ... what's he meant to say in reply? "Er, good?", "Thank you?", "I'm glad you cried"!!? And suddenly I find myself wondering if people appreciate having their life's work measured on my personal lachrymosity scale...
Yet, despite all the evidence to the contrary I do not consider myself a cry baby. Nor am I a hormonally unstable drama queen prone to hyperbole. Oh, OK then, I'll admit to the hyperbole ... but everything else? Nope. Not guilty.
I am however, happy to be categorised as 'sensitive'. Well, I can't really fly in the face of the the obvious, can I?
Once frequently accused of being 'too sensitive', 'hypersensitive' and 'over sensitive' I now consider myself 'just right' in the sensitive stakes thank you very much. It's why I've always chosen to work in support roles. And it's the reason I'm good at what I do.
But then, I've had enough practice, I've always been like this.
Family lore states that, when I was tiny, I would cry if my dolls got 'hurt' or even if they were held upside down! Burned into my memory is the time I accidentally stood on a snail I'd been keeping as a pet and the image of a lamb we saw limping across a road on the moors when I was young!
Even now I have to turn away or close my eyes if there's anything violent on screen especially if it's a head injury or else I'll ... yes, you guessed it, start crying! On the other hand, I regularly seek out tear-inducing films and documentaries about babies, children, ill people, brave people, disadvantaged people, inspiring people, people in love, people out of love ... you get the picture ....
Look, I'm not saying it's a regular bout of all-out, hands-down weeping and wailing, but I bet at least once a week I well-up and sometimes I even lose a few drops of water from my eyes. I swear I've even toyed with the idea of a regular blog feature entitled 'Things making me cry this week'... [a feature I've not entirely ruled out ... ;)] and I could probably go on regaling you with such moments for the rest of my natural, blogging life. But for now, how about I share the thing that made me cry last Monday? The thing which stirred both my tear ducts and this entire train of thought.
I'd better warn you that if you're of an equally sensitive disposition you might want to look away now or at least have a tissue handy. Ready?
OK then. Meet Miss Ellie:
Miss Ellie featured in the Guardian newspaper's regular 'Unsettling animal picture of the week' spot last weekend and after reading her story ... I might just have leaked from an eye .. or two.
It told of how, one year on from being voted the somewhat heartless title of The World's Ugliest Dog ... she's just died.
I'm not even a dog lover, in fact I'm scared of most of them, but seriously, how sad is that? Talk about adding insult to injury! Or in little Miss Ellie's case the insult of being considered the ugliest dog in the world came first ... and then she died! Poor thing!
So what do I want you to do with this information? I don't know. I just thought I'd mention it, just so you know ... Maybe so you don't think I'm on the verge of a breakdown the next time I mention I've been crying.
Because there will be a next time! There's undoubtedly a whole emotional, uplifting, stirring, inspirational, saddening, frustrating, infuriating, wonderful world of 'next times' out there just poised to draw a tear from me. And it'll succeed.
As for you ... well, if Miss Ellie's story has left you in tears too, I'm really sorry, and I fully understand ... would you like to share a tissue with me?