The Grief in Art.

It’s hard to write about the grief you hold. It consumes you and makes you silent, often. “I will be there for you, if you need it,” people tell you. “I can do anything you want, if you so desire. Just give me a call, and it will be done.” But do they really mean it? Does it really matter? Their hearts may be in the right place, the intentions are clear, but what they say and what they will actually do are often opposite actions.

The darkness closes in around you. People wonder if it’s real or just their imaginations. You are clouded with the waves of emotions that crash against you as you struggle to stay afloat, lost without the anchor of the one you loved.

A few will understand, but sometimes the few are hard to reach. It’s hard to catch them and hold them close.

You pull open the blanket page, hold the notebook close to you. The pen is there, in your hand, as if by magic.

You will write. You will draw. Your thoughts have breached the wall that has kept them in. It doesn’t stop. It will not stop, no more. You keep on writing. The black ink fills the whiteness, a cascading ocean of your creation.

It ebbs and flows and slows down to a stop. The words of your emotion, destruction pools about your feet. You have written your words, your powerful words that released a thousand thoughts. What you really meant to say is now said.

Will you really share it? Will people really know how you think?

Only you will know. Only you have that power. Sharing is hard. Sharing is sacred. Grief can tear you and yours apart.

But at least it’s out. At least it’s written. You don’t have to say anything more because you’re on your way to healing.

You are almost whole.

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Fame Isn’t Everything, Is It?

Alan RickmanI’ll always remember Alan Rickman as Professor Snape. With a book as grand as the Harry Potter series, one can expect that not everything is going to go as completely as you imagined it, but I had no qualms about Alan Rickman. Throughout the series, Rickman made Snape to exactly how I imagined him to be. The voice, the hair, the looks, the everything. He truly brought such a complex character into something solid and real. I also loved him in Sweeney Todd. A dark musical with complex characters, he really knew how to be despicable.

He was a unique man, interesting. I think his voice was his signature. How many have a deep, gravely voice such as his. When I saw him in another movie, I knew it was him instantly because of his voice.

Alan Rickman, when I’m 80 years old, I’ll still be watching you perform and I’ll still be amazed at how perfect you portrayed the characters of my imagination and my grandchildren will ask me “After all this time?” and I will say “Always.” Thank you for bringing such memorable characters to life. I hope you’ll be making stardust with Bowie tonight.

Movie Review: Before I Go to Sleep

Christine is a forty year old amnesiac who wakes up remembering nothing about her life with a man she never recognizes. Every morning he tells her that he is her husband and that ten years ago she had a car accident that left her with an impaired memory. One day, Nicole receives a phone call from Dr. Nasch, who tells her that they’d been seeing each other for several weeks to help regain her memory. He tells her she’s been keeping a video diary about herself and tells her where she’s hidden it, hoping that her diary will help her get her memory back. As she becomes more aware of her surroundings, Christine begins to suspect that not everything is as it seems and that her husband Ben is hiding something from her, something so dangerous that he might kill her to keep it from being discovered.

It’s been a while since a movie featuring an amnesiac has been produced, so I was interested in watching Before I Go to Sleep, especially when it has Nicole Kidman playing the lead. The movie was suspenseful and kept you at the edge of your seat. It became a little predictable at the end, as many movies have tried to play on memory loss before, but overall, I found the movie to be intriguing. I was a little skeptical about the whole memory loss thing, so I went online and discovered that such a traumatic memory loss does happen to people and that there are various ways of helping the patient who is suffering. Being a writer and avid reader myself, I could see how having such a medical problem would be something that any writer or movie producer would love to play on, especially in a scenario where the victim’s family might be trying to kill them.

I realize that Before I Go to Sleep is based on a book by the same name by S.J. Watson, but after having seen the movie, I’m not sure if I want to go back and try to read the book. I tried reading the book once before and it didn’t grip me as well as I’d hoped. Seeing the movie helped me grasp the major plot lines without having to delve any deeper into the movie.

I wouldn’t consider watching the movie again, but it’s a movie worth watching just once to see what the hype is all about and especially if you’re not the one to read the book.

The Woman I Never Knew

I saw her once at my friend’s creative memoir/nonfiction thesis presentation last year. She was my friend’s mother. She sat in the center desk, second row. I didn’t think too much about it, we were all friends and family in support of someone we loved dear. Until my friend started sharing her work, sharing her memories of her mother in connection with other experiences. Poignant, beautiful, and talented that my friend is, her work was brought to light when her mother shared her thoughts, views and side of the stories that my friend shared with us that day. She held herself well: kindness radiated her through her words. I knew in a heartbeat she was one of those women everybody wishes they had in their own lives; motherly natures are always that way.

A few days later, we became Facebook friends. Tho we never met in person again, I felt like I got to know her well through her posts and comments and likes of my posts. A lover of art and music, we shared a love of writing, God, and Les Miserables. Whenever I was down, she tried to bring me up in a gentle, yet no nonsense sort of way. I was always ecstatic whenever she made a comment on something I said or liked a link or picture.

A few days ago, she asked me to pray for her because she was undergoing surgery on Friday. I told her I would and kept her in my thoughts constantly. Unfortunately, my computer was in the shop for a week until yesterday. I didn’t realize that she passed away on Sunday afternoon, surrounded by the family and friends who loved her well until I logged into my Facebook account yesterday evening.

Let’s be honest: I’m devastated and heartbroken. I knew her, but I never knew her. I knew her through her words, her kind, beautiful words. I felt the love radiating from her even across the miles. I was devastated because I didn’t know, that I didn’t pray harder or think about her more. I knew she was suffering through a lot of pain, something she was strong enough to live with all her life, but I figured it would be something routine and normal; she would get up on her feet again in no time. She was a woman of love and I wish I knew her more, got to know her as a person a bit, listened to her stories.

She was my friend’s mother, and her beauty lives on inside her. I know my friend must be devastated. I can imagine and surmise through her posts on Facebook, but I’ll never truly know. Not really. Pain can be empathized with,  but never truly felt unless you went through it in the first person. If I’m feeling the loss of such a great woman, I can’t imagine what my friend feels.

People come into our lives and people leave it…we just have to trust that life has a road mapped out for us, that these people came into our lives for a reason, to challenge us, and help us grow. This amazing woman was one of those people. I don’t know why I was blessed to get to know her from a distance, but she’s sure helped me down the road to faith and trust in God. May God keep you and bless you, Miss Genie, and that he takes away your pain from this life. I love you.