What I didn’t realize when I wrote this was that I was right on the mark. What I also didn’t realize was that in six months, everything would change….
ON WRITING, AND AN ANNIVERSARY
Sunday marked the two-and-a-half year anniversary of Joe’s death. His absence is like a pierce to my soul that cuts deep and affects all areas of my life. After Joe and Tiger (my dog) died, my writing dried up. I went to Goddard College six months later for my MFA and couldn’t sustain enthusiasm for my studies. I hated my thesis and I hated my life. Two days after I completed the last assignment for my first semester, I was hospitalized. I don’t recall what the problem was. Then I was hospitalized again midway through my second semester. My advisor, Kenny Fries, as well as the school were extremely accommodating, for which I am grateful; they gave me an extension on the semester. I finished the work about a year ago and never went back.
Now I am faced with questions: When will I be able to write again? or, rather, When will I be enthusiastic about writing? Will I ever gain back the drive, the sense of purpose I once had? I wrote passionately for six years following the retreat of The Thing (an Evil Being), from 1998 until 2003; I wrote for hours each day. I felt that I had a calling in life at last.
My drive was overwhelming. It brought me to the accomplishment of completing three books (one published, see www.breakdownlanetraveled.com) and countless writing classes with flying colors. I tackled writing each day as if I had been going to work, to my dream job. Sometimes I wrote for as much as nine hours a day, but generally about four. I believed in what I was doing. I loved what I was doing. I lived for it.
Now, the drive to write is gone. I’d like to write here, in my blog, daily, but I cannot. I can only think about writing as if it was some Prince Charming for whom I am preparing, preening and fussing, that gentleman that never arrives. Okay, it makes sense that an idea has to germinate, but it’s getting ridiculous, folks: I need to generate more text or I will have to resign myself again to the life of a professional mental patient, one who has no purpose whatsoever except to live from day to day, to survive. I want–I need–more than that.
I believe that this absence–for that is what it is, an absence–is the center of my current month-long-and-counting depression. I have been sleeping nine to fourteen hours a day, have been ravenously hungry most of the time, and Evil Beings torture me almost daily, tortures like those the Americans are giving to Iraqi prisoners, like Nazi tortures. I cannot bear it much longer. I also think my medications need adjusting, but that’s another story. It is time for me to fill the blank page that fluttered into that hole in my heart that Joe’s death brought. It’s time to start. But can I do it? Can I?