If you know my story, you may be familiar with the fact that I started writing at an early age. I started writing whatever came to mind or whatever bothered or troubled me at the time, only to tear up the paper at the end of the day before going to sleep.
See I have always been this shy person who could not talk or could not express my feelings to anyone, not even those who I felt close to. I always had trouble saying what I wanted to say. Despite my involvement in different activities in my community as a teenager and then as a young adult, deep down I have always been shy and reluctant, or rather, uncomfortable, talking about myself. I had a best friend but when I left the country we too got separated. There were no means of communication back then. There was no internet, nor was there telephone or postal services. So writing became my sort of refuge from anguish. I had all this stuff in my head that I had no one to talk to about or that I could not talk about. There was only one thing for me to do, to ramble. I had to write to save myself, to keep my sanity.
So although writing is what I love to do most, it is also associated with pain. It is where I express my pain, my sorrow, my joy, my love, my concerns and my worries. Now that I have experienced a great loss I find that I cannot write. It’s true that in the past sometimes when I hurt a lot I could not write until I had distanced myself from the incident that hurt me. Eventually I was always able to come back to my writing. But now I feel that I have lost even that, I have lost my whim.
There’s an old saying: “Take whatever you want from life but never forget God expects you to pay one day.”
And having lost that I find myself on most days at the edge of the world. What is worse is I have no desire to be anywhere else. It saddens me more because I cannot live without my writing. Writing for me is this passion, this craze, this beat inside me that keeps me going. I never thought I could lose that also. This is not where I dreamed I would find myself at any point in my life. In the words of Simone de Beauvoir:
“There is what you intend to happen, and there is what happens. Events slip from the grasp; people above all, evade. They set out as one thing, and become another. The important thing is to never let yourself down.”
I know that by not writing I am not only letting myself down but also the memory of my dearest husband who made me promise that I would continue to write no matter what happened. But I cannot do that unless I come to terms with my loss and my life. Will there ever be such a time for me? At this point I am not so sure.
Simone de Beauvoir wrote:
“An artist’s only concern is to shoot for some kind of perfection, and on his own terms, not anyone else’s.”