There are expectations when you are the writer in the family, sure the expectations may all be in your own head, but regardless, sometimes, the writing you are called on to do is tough. Tough for you anyway. Moments when you are shooting for Martin Luther King memorable, tear jerking, heart warmingly unforgettable.
At these times I have discovered my non writing brethren rise to the challenge and come up with stellar writing and I seemingly ring it in. I try, of course I do, I have the highest expectations for myself, I want to write that prose, that divine emotionally wrenching script, but it just doesn’t happen.
Example 1, my wedding vows. My darling Bman and I decided eight years ago this Easter Sunday, to write our own vows for our very low key wedding. It played on my mind for weeks prior, naturally, but it just didn’t come together for me. I can vividly remember my dyslexic wonderful husband jumping out of bed one night about a month before the wedding, flicking on the light and saying he’d just thought of his vows and had to write then down right then and there. The only person he showed before the day was his sister (who was his bestman) to make sure he hadn’t made any glaring errors, and based on the result I think he nailed it first go.
His vows were poetic, full of imagery and just terribly, tear-jerkingly romantic. Seriously, his sister, my sister and myself were in tears as I suspect were many others in the 20-odd strong crowd. My vows were decidely less memorable. In fact, I can only remember what they were in vague terms. The writer dropped the ball. But it’s ok, the marriage is fabulous success despite my mediocre vows, the ones in my heart, the ones he said, were true and heard.
I’m now faced with my next challenge, when the writer of the family really should be the one to step up to the task. On Friday my sister and I are delivering my Grandmother’s eulogy. Super Sis has already written some snippets and they are beautiful. Concise but heartfelt and just lovely. I’m afraid she’s gonna be the one that carries the day again, the writer will contribute, I’ll speak, I’ll put in my ideas and memories, help compile and arrange the memories of the other grandchildren, but I seriously think that my lovely Super Sis is going to prove the lyrical one.
I’m not fishing for reassurrance or encouragement, truly. It’s just an interesting observation about the difficulties writers can face when writing their own emotions rather than being able to filter them through their characters.
Maybe I should write a narrative eulogy? Perhaps not.
I admire memoir writers, I’m not up to that task, also my life is far too mundane and mainstream to be of much interest to others,the Bman and my lovely inlaws on the other hand, now there are some stories.
So what I want to say is, anyone can write, we just can’t all do it all of the time, even us writers.