I Didn’t Forget.

In July 2005, my family lost my beloved father in death. Naturally, all things suffered because of this loss, which meant my overall desire to do anything. One of those things was writing. desireSignificant because writing has always been my tool for dealing with personal pain; my longstanding avenue for catharsis. But I didn’t want to pick up a pen or type a few words on the computer. I didn’t want to do anything. And yet, because writing chose me and not the other way around, my art didn’t thoroughly abandon me. I found myself penning a few poems here and there, some about my father; I started a short story or two. But by 2007, I was done. Even if your art chooses you, you have to feed it with inspiration if you want it to remain by your side. There was no inspiration. I was blocked, absent of ideas, and basically a functioning griever, going through the motions of life and work and all that came along with it. At that time, I was temping at an architectural design company. Eventually, they decided to take me as a permanent staff member. One afternoon, I mentioned my two-year long writing block to one of my supervisors. She asked me if I blogged. I replied that no, I didn’t. She said the following. “Blogging will help you get the ideas and your creative mind flowing. Believe me. Try it. It’ll work.” Well, This Square Peg tends to be obedient when given suggestions. (Don’t confirm that statement with my mother. She will refute it.) That very evening in 2007, I started my first blog.

ecoI knew that there wouldn’t be fiction or poetry flowing from these fingers. Not yet. No, I simply began to document my thoughts. Having kept a journal since I was 13 years old all the way through college, I knew how to pen the endless sentences that ran through my mind. (I still have those journals and I still read them from time to time and oh, boy.) So I began to look at blogging like journaling, except it was online and open for a few people to read whenever they found my little corner on the web. And I wrote and wrote and wrote. About my days, my adventures at work, my sadness, my goals and dreams. I wrote with the intent of merely occupying my mind. That happened and then some. It was also a great source of accountability–whereas a physical journal could just sit there, hopelessly ignored by me, each post I wrote helped me to be accountable to my goal of writing regularly. Eventually, the blog became almost like a friend who was there to listen while I talked to myself and whomever was reading. For six years, I blogged faithfully, even after the creative side of my mind stretched its arms, did away with the cobwebs, and began to churn once again.

My first post on that blog was entitled “So I Don’t Forget.” Blogging/journaling so I don’t forget my love of words, the utter joy of stringing words together. Needless to say, that little blog restored that joy exponentially. After a slight break with blogging, I came right back to my old friend through This Square Peg. I didn’t forget.

Shout out to that former supervisor who gave me that advice years ago. And everlasting thanks to my father, my Daddy–he was Daddy from the start and always will be–who loved the arts and generously gave that love with me.


3 Replies to “I Didn’t Forget.”

  1. My dear,

    I really enjoyed reading this heart-warming piece, a lovely tribute to a loving father. 🙂

    I like how you were able to identify the source of certain beginnings. When asked the question “Why do you write?” some say they write simply because they cannot NOT write.

    Your emotional shut-down after the loss of your father resonated deeply with me. Pain sometimes sucks the will to participate in life, not necessarily because we don’t want to, but because we actually don’t have the strength to. Sometimes we even forget how to. When my father passed, it was as though I was in a trance.

    @ “Even if your art chooses you, you have to feed it with inspiration if you want it to remain by your side.” It’s interesting how some people become muses to their grief. It showers them with creative dust, they even depend on it to cure their writers bloc. Probably why writers are believed to be melancholic. Lol

    Ah! I kept journals from the age of eleven till my second year at University, when I stumbled upon them a while ago, I cringed while laughing at myself. If only I’d known then that adulting is so overrated, I’d have refused to grow up.

    Thank God for those people who motivate us to live more, to do more and to be more.

    1. Hello there,

      First, my condolences on the loss of your father. ❤️‍ If anything, it’s comforting to be truly understood.

      Thank you for reading. This morning, as I trudged to work, I remembered, quite randomly, how my adventures in blogging began and how they were tied to my Dad. Interestingly enough, at the time, I attributed that writing shut-down to simply being blocked. Looking back, it’s clear that my grief had taken over everything. Like you said, it saps your strength and the will to even turn to the things that typically help us during those low times.

      LOL @ our muses–I’ve longed accepted the mercurial nature of my muse. I do more for her than vice versa. 😄

      Those journals! I read some of my entries and could hardly stop laughing. The things that were important to us back then! Now, it’s taxes, bills, and not rolling my eyes at my boss. Openly, anyway. Lol

      “Thank God for those people who motivate us to live more, to do more and to be more.” Well said, and absolutely agreed.

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