Happy New Year
Let joy be the theme for this year.
Recently in Seattle, I overheard from the back of the car a conversation between life partner and his old, close friend, in which a quote was shared from a wise person the friend had encountered:
"People who are grieving don't read fiction."
I realized that I have not been comfortable reading fiction since … well, a long time ago. I was even ascribed the label of not being a real reader, which was always puzzling to me because I read constantly – just not fiction. At first I thought it was because I was too serious or studious. But the more I thought about it, I understood when I started grieving. It was around 1974 to 1975, and directly relates to the time of my forced abortion. What a weak, full-of-shame, I'll-do-anything-for-people-to-love-me type person I was back in those days. I shudder to think it. The loss was enormous. I was only able to scrape the surface of processing it 20 years later with a grief counselor in Buffalo, New York. And, now, as I continue to shed self-loathing – or, the shame of all that is "me," I allow myself to discover joy – joyfulness – joyousness – yes indeed, happiness. That is exactly why I placed the Angel of Happiness on my wish-list this Christmas. I need all the help I can get!
2009 seems promising to me, personally. Entering the age of sixty in May feels like it might be heralding in a new era. And so, as I continue to work at driving out ancient, toxic shame to regain my joyful birthright, perhaps (just perhaps) I will find interest in reading fiction again … again … again … I mean, in between the memoirs I enjoy reading lately.