Bet you thought you’d never see a title like that from me, huh?
I’ve had a tough past few weeks. So tough that I can’t even be angry or upset because I literally feel like I’m being struck and buffeted from all sides and I have to keep moving to survive, like a swimmer in the ocean.
Of one thing I am sure: there is power in the telling of your troubles. Most conventional wisdom recommends unburdening your heart and not keeping your feelings bottles up inside. I believe in this, but lately I’ve been thinking there’s a bit more to it than that.
Think about what happens when you repeat a word over and over. Eventually, it loses its meaning and becomes a mere sound.
Think about words like ‘happy’, ‘sad’, or ‘mad’, words that are used so often they have hardly any meaning left to them.
When you repeat a story over and over, particularly a painful one, you give a piece of it away to each person you tell. If you’re hurting, you give away a bit of that pain. Maybe that sounds cruel to the other person, but it doesn’t hurt them. It makes you feel better because you’re shredding your pain and giving it away to others. In the same way you repeat words until they lose their meaning, you repeat a story until it loses its meaning.
So where does that leave writers, the storytellers?
I’m honestly not sure.
Perhaps it doesn’t work the same, because you create it yourself. The painful things that happen to us are often enacted upon us. The hurts and injustice of the world come from others and things outside our control.
Maybe that’s why the repetition of the stories we create grow in power, rather than decrease.