As a writer, I’ve thought about a number of different writing ideas and projects. The bulk of the ideas are fantastic. No, I’m not being narcissistic or egotistical…I mean many of the ideas are grounded in various fantasies of experiences I’ve never had. For example, I’ve wanted to write about the different “holy moments” in life, such as birth (well, I’ve experienced it myself obviously, but haven’t had the opportunity to witness it), death (GLAD to be in the dark on that one on a first-hand basis), “seeing” someone for the first time (not just visibly, but having the experience of being able to embrace their very essence), and so on… All of these and several others I’ve dreamed about and imagined what it would be like to be in such a moment, but still I’m clueless. I’ve also had several ideas surrounding the whole phenomenon of falling in love…again, not something I’m sure I’ve experienced. I’ve had crushes, sexual flings, and been infatuated with the “idea” of people…but the experience of being baptized in the holy warmth of a whole love with someone who’s right there in the baptismal with me is something that has escaped me. But the one thing I have working for me is my imagination.
Even with that, I have yet to allow myself to tap into all of the recesses of myself without judgment. For example, an incredibly dynamic writer that I’ve grown to appreciate is Shonda Rhimes (Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice, Scandal). But some of the ideas she comes up with are from places that I’d be afraid to fully venture into. Although if I did, I believe I’d surprise myself. I have enough dark places inside me that “Hollywood” would probably welcome me with open arms, but I haven’t quite released the idea of emotional safety (probably another reason why I’ve never been exposed to that baptism I referred to earlier…because being in love is not “safe”. It’s the riskiest thing we ever do. But I’ll write about that another time.) But I know that those “safe” story lines are the corny predictable stories that don’t go anywhere beyond superficial pleasantries. And the truth of the matter is that I’m not a “safe” thinker.
For as long as I can remember, my imagination has tended to lean in the direction of the worst possible scenario. Fear and uncertainty were groomed in me by the unexpected experiences of my childhood…more stories that I can’t write about because they’re not just my stories, and would expose things about other people that they haven’t revealed yet. And I don’t have the energy to change all of those scenarios and facts to protect them…might as well just make up a new story altogether – which is where that vivid (albeit dark) imagination of mine comes in. It starts in truth, but then spins off into layers of details and complexities that turn it into something completely different than how it started. I’ve done this in my life a number of times.
The thing that has preserved me through this darkness is an uncommon optimism that things will actually work out in the best possible way. Not necessarily in a cliche “happily ever after” fashion, but in a peaceful and joyful resolution that leaves all parties whole. Huhn…guess that is happily ever after. Whatever the case, the point is it doesn’t end in my dark imagination. There is always hope. And hope always prevails.
These two can be kinda maddening at times, but rather than condemn and/or try to “fix” the two ideas, I’m taking them as a gift. And with that gift, I intend to allow it to work for its best purpose…one that I won’t try to define. It will define itself, and I’ll work within it.
So I’m strapping in for the ride…