Being in a period of mourning is a strange thing. Late last week, I was waiting in a coffee shop for a friend and took the space in my day to read through various short stories and scripts I’ve written over the last few years. There are considerably more than I thought, and being so far removed from my dream of writing professionally gave me a chance to read my own work without stress or putting a price tag on my efforts.
I’m a good writer. Certainly not a great writer, but good, and once upon a time, I was willing to get better. What I have been unable to see from deep in the thick of my own dreams was that all of the work I’ve done has carried one theme: everyone is, in their own way, trying to heal a broken heart.
It would seem I’ve been doing Shadow Work for a lot longer than I thought I was, or at least I was being subconsciously nudged to do so. The truth deep in my psyche is that I have been heartbroken for a very long time. Little bits and pieces of my childhood have splashed across my eyes while I’ve been moving through the shadows, and it’s clear that I’ve been carrying this wound as far back as I can remember. That means family issues, and writing about those here would surely be more trouble than its worth. That’s an area of my life my blog can’t follow me, but know I’m pulling out that dusty ol’ file of familial dysfunction and beginning to see about healing myself.
In the meantime, a little idea was whispered in my ear in that coffee shop. I have a perfectly formed first draft of a short story collection that just needs editing, a little tweaking, a fresh coat of paint, and a pretty teal bow. It’s called “Ghost Stories for the Brokenhearted” and I want to share it. I haven’t figured out how, yet, but I know that there has to be something good to come from all of this pain. Vincent Van Gogh painted his wounds onto the canvas (literally) and I can’t stand in front of his work without crying. I, too, know that hurt, and to think that a man stood in a field 200 years ago and painted how I feel inside is pure magic to me. Maybe someone 200 years from now can look at my stories and feel the way he makes me feel: united in our disconnect.