I’ve always loved to write. It’s like reading a delicious book. It takes your imagination galloping on adventures. You feel wild and free.
But there are days, like today, that writing is elusive. The words are chained to an anchor at the bottom of an ocean, and I don’t have the strength to pull that anchor up.
You see, I am authoring a book about my dad, a simple, courageous man who overcame alcohol and is leading a happy, simple life. The writing started from interviews and then it became an essay and now I’m writing his story. I’m hoping this story will heal my family because there has been much pain. But the story is not an easy one to write. First, it’s not my story. I don’t even know all the characters yet. Second, it’s my dad! Who wants to screw that up? Next, I am interviewing a “vaulted” man, a man who never really let us in as kids and didn’t express emotion. Lastly, there’s that added tricky bonus, he has later stages of Alzheimer’s. Now that’s a very tricky beast! Not only does it play with time periods and events, it sometimes keeps me from interviewing him. I will probably talk about that part in another post because it’s a painful process that deserves it’s own category.
On good days, my dad lets out a little emotion and snippets of stories. Sometimes I get to ask more questions, and sometimes, when it’s more real and raw, the locks on the vault reappear and I don’t get to know more. Then I write stories from bones….It’s hard to write stories from bones. You need muscles to get it moving…and sometimes I have to build the muscles from snippets. And that’s like putting together a puzzle that’s all the same color!
For now, what I get to enjoy is this time with my dad. Because these little morsels of time where he opens up, even if for only a small time, it’s glorious and my soul dances. I am truly living in gratitude, but oh, how I wish we could have started sooner.