Lethologica: the inability to recall the correct word you want to use
The aforementioned word essentially describes my life. Every. Day. You would think after writing a book, maybe I would have a better idea of what in the world I would like to say, right? Nope. Especially when I’m writing… There’s always that word, that perfect word, that would make the sentence superb, but I can’t remember the dang word. SO. FRUSTRATING.
I haven’t been doing much writing lately, though. Aside from the stresses of school (finals are coming up), my family has been going through a very hard time over the past few weeks. My papa was sick and hospitalized for over a month, and he passed away last week. Seeing him sick, watching the way my family acted around him, the way everyone was affected by his passing – it was all a novel experience to me. I’ve never lost someone close to me, so I’ve never truly felt that kind of pain before. Papa was a Christian, so I do have assurance that he is in peace with God now, but there’s still that ache of not being with him, of not ever being ever to see him again on this earth. I don’t believe one can truly understand what it’s like to lose someone until it’s happened to them – and I believe that everyone feels it in a different way. Which is one reason why I choose to never use the phrase “I understand exactly what you’re going through” because you can’t ever truly understand how another feels. Everyone experiences pain and loss differently. Some people deal with it silently all while going about their daily activities while others completely shut down for a few days. I won’t ever say that this experience has allowed me to now understand exactly what other people are feeling when they go through a loss in their family, but I will say I can now feel a special kind of empathy for another. Sometimes the best thing someone can do is simply be there for another. For me personally, it wasn’t the words people said that meant so much to me. It was their presence. I am so thankful for the abundance of love that has been shown to my family throughout the month Papa was in the hospital and the week since his passing. It’s so wonderful to know how loved and respected my papa was among so many different people.
There’s my awesome papa and me. He was and always will be my favorite. :)
Now I tell you all this to say that this experience has given me some valuable knowledge for my writing, as well. Plenty of characters in the Corripian Chronicles deal with loss, and before this I’ve always written it on assumption of how people feel, or just by watching others around me. Now I know. I know that it’s not just a pain that comes at the moment of the loss and skips away soon after. It’s the pain that flares up with the mention of a memory, a moment, a word. It’s the pain of realizing that those memories, moments, and words are all you have left of the person – so you hold on to them so tightly because you’re afraid that if you ever, ever forget, that person will be gone forever. I’ve always thought it so cliché when I’ve heard it before, but it’s so true. You want to hold on to everything you have left of that person because otherwise, you’re afraid you’ll dishonor their memory in some way.
I now have a greater understanding of how Zenia feels about her father, about why she is so fervent to remember him and continue to uphold his legacy. That is her way of dealing with the grief and pain of her loss.
And then there’s Xavier. I can also better understand where he comes from. It’s quite the opposite of Zenia. He’s felt the pain of loss and grief, and he’s decided that he doesn’t want to ever, ever feel it again. That’s his way of coping (not a good way), and he will eventually figure out that there are better ways. Pushing all hurtful thoughts and feelings away gives you no room to grow as a person. And I hope that’s something you will see through Xavier as the series progresses. He can’t truly grow and change until he realizes that he cannot keep his past hidden forever. The memories we have, however painful, will shape us into the persons we become. And any attempt to hide those memories, to pretend they never happened, will only cripple us in the future.
Enough of all that deep stuff. On a brighter note, I have exactly five days left of Freshman year of college. WhooOOOoOOOoOOOoOOOoOOO!! And on a super exciting note, I’m going to try to finish Book 2 by summer’s end. (Cue the Yoda saying “Try not. Do…or do not. There is no try.” *Gosh, Yoda, leave me alone*) I’m going to do my very, very best as an author (and college student who will also probably be working part- or full-time over the summer) to complete my first draft of Book 2 in the Corripian Chronicles. Maybe it will happen. Maybe not. But goals are good to set. So that’s what I’m doing. You know what else I’m going to do this summer? I’m going to learn how to change a tire and balance a checkbook. Because those both sound like extremely boring, useful things to know how to do.
I hope you all have a delightful weekend – and don’t forget to hug your mother super tightly this weekend and thank her for being awesome. Oh, and write her a card or give her tasty food. Moms like that stuff (at least mine does…).
Farewell to all,
“Only people who are capable of loving strongly can also suffer great sorrow, but this same necessity of loving serves to counteract their grief and heals them.” -Leo Tolstoy