Friday, January 4, 2008

It's The Story That I Love.

I think it's a curse that many writers have. I've read too many books. In books, when a heroine faces a crisis, when things get really hard, there is going to be a turning point. Things are either going to get much worse in an obvious way, or things are going to improve. In even the most postmodern, experimental, morally vacuous novel, there is some sense of something like resolution, or solution, or something. I often find myself waiting for that moment when all the answers become clear...when the moral or the message that I'm supposed to be understanding becomes obvious to me, or when the pivotal plot point emerges, when the hero saves the day or the anti-hero destroys everything.

Then again, maybe my anti-hero has been destroying everything for quite some time, and I'm just not acknowledging it. Hah.

I've seen myself do this in relationships in the past...I find myself so in love with the idea of the story that my partner and I are creating that I have a hard time letting it die. "But we've been together for so long! But we were so in love! But it would be so nice to tell our grandchildren how we met!"

My husband and I have a great story, and it's a story I'm good at telling. It's my favorite story. I judge all other stories alongside it. I look for the main characters in the best art, the best poetry. It's the story I've lived by for years. I don't like these latest chapters. I don't like the way it seems like it's going to end. I don't like the incredibly repetitive nature of the last several months, the languishing crises, the floundering heroine and the stagnant hero.

But I'm still clinging to it, still holding on to the intensity of those first moments of recognition, the memories of the first time he kissed me, the look in his eyes when we got married, the warm reunitings and painful partings that marked our tumultuous early years. I want it to end with grace, or not at all. I don't want to just fade out.