Sunday, Sept. 10, 2006
The Carnival Days
I read an entry by clicking on a banner - and lost the person's username. I hate when that happens. The entry was thoughtfully articulated, finally concluding, "I feel like the twenty year prologue to my life has finally come to an end."
I can relate. It's how I felt when my kids finally grew up and moved out, and moreso now that I'm privileged to live with my best friends and am planning to marry one of my best friends, one with whom I am also madly in love. How many people can say that? I couldn't until now, when I'm nearly 49 years old. It took close to half a century for me to find Mr. Right.
I don't know if I posted here or not, but I'm going to be a grandmother again - again again, I mean. My daughter-in-law is expecting a baby boy in early January, but we also found out last week that my youngest daughter and her husband are expecting a baby. A few years back, my mother warned me that grandchildren tend to come fast. My first two were three years apart, but these two will probably end up hanging out together if they're both boys. If the unknown quantity turns out to be a girl, of course, all bets are off. Cousins tend to buddy up based on same-gender combinations, for better or worse.
For both of the girls, the discovery of pregnancy post-dated doctors telling them they probably couldn't get pregnant. In fact, my youngest had been to the doctor only two or three weeks ago and they told her she had a tumor and would almost certainly not be able to get pregnant again. (This is the mom of my three-year-old daughter.) So she said while the timing wasn't the best, discovering that the "tumor" was actually a pregnancy was actually a relief.
Over the past couple of days I haven't done much that could be considered productive. (Not counting trying to help WildRosie.) But I got two powerful reminders that I still have an obligation to write. I have two stories, especially, that are languishing in the shadows of my consciousness, thrumming along a string of guilt that's playing a subliminal buzz in my head.
I will write them. I have to.
But part of the reason for the Brass Ring project is so I will have the TIME to write them.
Cross your fingers for me. One of the things I missed listing yesterday on the list of things to do was "being published." I didn't put it down because I have been published in a couple of forms. But I want to publish a full-length book and see it go somewhere outside the small confines of what I can do with self publishing.
Don't get me wrong; self-publishing is NOT a bad thing, and now that our own Cosmic has gone down that road, I am mulling that over as a real possibility for some of my writing. But the two stories I'm talking about? I was asked to write these people's memorials, asked to do so by members of their families, and I owe them the widest audience I can generate. Their stories, their lives, deserve to be told. My son has already promised that if and when I get them done, he has the connections to get the resulting books to people who can turn them into movies.
And I owe it to them to do the absolute best I can do; the digging for little truths, the nuances of shifting times and sensibilities, and the complete decimation of a culture defined by centuries.
Yeah, it's THAT kind of stories.
I won't pretend that my writing isn't partly ego, that I don't want to write the great world novel. But a bigger part is responsibility. This isn't technically news, since some of it happened more than half a century ago. But these stories were swept under the proverbial rug, and I've been called in as housekeeper. And I've gotta tell you, some of what was swept under some rugs forms some mighty big bumps. I want to dredge out the best of my reporting skills and incorporate them into bringing those ghosts back to life, showing what happened on both sides of a Catch 22.
But before I can do that, I will need to do some research I simply can't do from here, and in order to get the information I need, I'm gonna need that aforementioned Brass Ring project.
Guess that means I have to stay on the merry-go-round a little longer, after all.
Before - After
In the grander scheme of things, no soul can truly be replaced. Each one of us has a place in the universal tapestry. We each contribute our own color and texture. When one thread is snipped too soon, it distorts all the threads around it. Other lives can unravel and tear. If the wrong thread is ripped away, the whole fabric of life becomes dangerously fragile.
- LeiLani, aka Radiogurl aka Bright Opal (1957 - )