As one can likely guess, writing is a huge part of my life. Not only that, but it’s one of the most valuable assets I have, and have used it throughout my life accordingly.
For instance, when writing exam papers I’ve never gotten anything lower than an A, (even when I have zero idea what I’m talking about because I know how to sufficiently BS something; thanks, standardized testing system). I’m able to deal with those weird questions on job applications because, somehow, I’m able to write my way around them. (You know exactly what questions I’m talking about. Those ones that ask “what ambiguous life experiences gave you sufficient experience to deal with x scenario that’s never happened to anyone ever?”)
Also, no writer’s cramp. Those muscles are strong, baby.
However, there are also much more meaningful ways in which I can use my skills, and that is exactly what was called upon this past month.
My little brother unexpectedly passed away on May 1st. The amount of shock, of that out-of-body feeling is unlike anything I can convey at the present moment. But still, I had a familiar habit and comfort to fall back on, and it was something I needed to utilize. Writing.
I wrote my brother’s eulogy and delivered it in front of over 500 people. I wrote the poem that was in the distributed literature. I worked on the obituary.
Most obviously, my writing has zero weight on the tragedy of what happened. It’s a side-note, at most.
But. Writing helped (and is still helping) me through it. It allows me to put my grief and myriad other feelings down so that I can see the words staring back at me. It’s a release, if only small and temporary, from everything else around me. Writing has always offered me escapism, but primarily in the vein of storytelling. Now it’s much more than that.
So enjoy your days while you have them, and write while you have the chance. That’s certainly what I’ll be doing.