I need to cry on film. There are means to cheat this, but I don't want to use them. Neal says it's easy to sell tears on film, so I will cheat, if needed. But, I'd rather produce real tears. I don't know if I can. I'm afraid of the emotional preparation. I'm doing reasonably well in my life, now, but at the cost of feeling somewhat calloused--at least at the places my soul has suffered the most abrasion--and less sensitive to mood or sentiment.
When have I cried in the last year? In despair, last winter, as I struggled with a particularly hairy depressive episode; during sessions with my voice coach in the physical joy that accompanies break-throughs, from time to time (i.e., a joy that I don't feel as emotion, but which announces itself in tears, despite what I consciously feel); no other time in the last year I can remember, off hand. Before then, of course, but those moments of heartbreak are buried under such callouses that shaving them off would leave me too sensitive by half, or rather, that's what I fear.
But, it's also where I need to go, as an actor. No, I don't have to re-experience feelings of suicide and utter hopelessness, but to feel anything ELSE I do need to no longer hold myself in FEAR of my most hopeless moments. I need to risk their approach in the trust that the very act of taking that risk will keep them at bay, at a distance, in the past where they belong.