Face the music we say, and mean, that its time to admit what everyone knows we have been avoiding!
I had a spontaneous moment of disclosure on Saturday in which I was hosting my parents for the day. We sat in the window of my airy kitchen on a beautiful warm day for early April. In one of those lovely moments that kills a few birds with one stone, they were cautiously investigating my ipad after years of Luddite resistance to encroaching marginalisation by technology. Would there ever be an easier time for them to indulge in this technology? Dad had difficulty disguising his amazement at the simplicity and the fingertip accessibility to just about anything he ever needed to know. However it was the realisation that they could read and view unfolding stories of their offspring’s lives that was compelling them. On this neat little screen laid bare the unguarded honesty of Facebook, their grandchildren’s selfies and off-the-cuff captions. The moment had dawned when they realised life had moved on without them.
I stretched my courage to give away a little more since they were finally out of their comfort zone. I showed them my new website and then they eagerly scrolled through my online manifesto. Mum shifted uneasily in her sunny chair as she absorbed the abstract reflections.
” I can’t say I ever felt like this!” she puzzled until I explained the sense of frustration that inspires my story.
Disconcerted and personally slighted she asked “And where did all that start; how far does that go back?!”
I hesitated to go that far! But I had better get used to disclosure. Every writer has to overcome their inner resistance to divulging cherished perceptions to the world…but to one’s parents? It couldn’t get much more squirm inducing could it? The benefit though is that now we stand together viewing the world from an adult platform as peers and partners in making sense of the world. And I think that they are actually a whole lot more curious than they realised! So I thank them for the music, “the songs I’m singing”…. Out of frustration comes fulfilment.
Out of pain comes purpose and from the earliest incomprehensible curtailing of childish curiosity comes a passion to know and understand that will always eventually find expression . Even if it is the neglected desire to interact virtually by touchscreen technology suppressed until one’s 82nd year!