I have spent the last week attempting to encapsulate the feelings of grief into a single conversation.
In this time of uncertainty, strangeness, fear, you would surely think I’d be able to whip something up. If I can move past my defence mechanisms of humour and self deprecation.
I don’t think I’m alone in avoiding negative emotions. I have a hard enough time wading through my anxiety and feelings of unworthiness, let alone including some time to dissect emotions such as grief, disappointment, terror. It’s hard, it will always be hard, so why am I trying to write about it?
It’s important to understand the the emotions I’m trying to get down on paper are not necessarily my own. I have not been through exactly what my characters have. But I’ve been through some of it, I know people who have been through the rest, it’s still difficult to imagine putting a completely fictional character through such emotional stress. I feel kind of mean trying to do it.
But I am under the impression that if I do it, if it gets read by someone going through something similar, then they won’t feel so alone. I think that’s a good reason to do anything.
The problem now comes in the struggle that is attempting to verbalise such a visceral emotion. How does someone communicate the immense loss of losing a child? The heartbreaking trauma of losing a friend? The depression, anger, rage, frustration, apathy, and so many other things that one goes through. How do you put that into one conversation?
This has been my problem for the last week.
As I try to untie the knot of complexity that is the human mind in grief, I am allowing myself to feel the things that we generally all sweep under the rug. What a wild ride it has been. And I am so glad to be done with this particularly heart-wrenching scene.
I think what I have learned from this is that human emotion is far more complicated than I originally thought. That perhaps even my own feelings towards loss and trauma are deeper than I believed.
I suggest ever writer delve into the hard stuff. The stuff you usually avoid. The things you’ll discover may surprise you.