Monday, May 13, 2013

Arc of Change

In the past two months I lost my uncle and aunt, each siblings of my father who passed away in 1988.  In the midst of the two losses, I sent off my literary characters with my blessing and loads of tears into the big unknown of potential publication.  I’m cheering them on as they try to get a job.  The remaining patriarch and matriarch of my family having passed into the light of innocence are with their Creator for all eternity. 

I was emotionally raw from the death of my uncle, a man who was a great story teller (more on that later) when with celebration and prayer, I held my breath and pushed send.  With both joy and sadness, I sobbed onto the shoulder of Jenni Nelson, my editor, who I have been so blessed to have with me on this long journey.  The emotions were euphoric joy, relief, sadness, fear and overall… really strange!  Within two hours, I received the phone call from one of my cousins that my aunt was failing.  Unfortunately, she passed away early the next morning, peacefully, thank God.  Once again, my husband sat at the computer booking another flight and hotel, for another sad occasion.  In that whirlwind, I had no time to fully process emotionally or personally the fact that my characters had left the nest.

My aunt had never said a bad word in her life, she was a virtual saint.  Nobody and I mean nobody could ever say a mean thing about her.  She was a real angel in the flesh, and I found myself lost!  I was so used to creating and working with my angel of an editor, and I dreadfully missed it.  I didn’t know what to do with myself, with my newfound time.  I was so used to sending Jenni chapters, re-working them, receiving them back until finally seeing a final version.  When that process ended, it was like the brakes were applied so suddenly that the inertia of my body wanted to keep going, but it smacked against the laws of gravity, stopping me cold.

For weeks I wanted to write another long overdue post, but quite frankly, I couldn’t!  I was trying to come to grips with all of the life changes I was going through.  I tried to let myself jot something down but it was nothing more than a bunch of mish mosh hibble jibble.  I had often wondered how I would feel when my characters left the nest.  Well, it feels lonely, practically like an empty nester.

It is interesting though, how the deaths of my patriarchs and matriarch helped me.  For one thing I learned was that many of my family members are story tellers.  Those who have passed have a story with a forever-after happy ending.  With that reality, I see my characters moving along the same arc of change.  Like family members who have passed over from this world to the next, so too did my characters.  All of them have been created, nurtured and loved into eternal hope.  My uncle and aunt are both experiencing the best reunion imaginable and seeing their creator face to face.  Their aging human skin has been transformed into ageless youth, and my uncle has all the time in the world to tell his stories (I’m still not sure if they are real or based in fact!)  Yes, I will still shed many tears, but I now see my tears as apart of a natural and necessary grieving process.  Their future is more secure than ever, because they are holding hands with their Creator. 

I therefore continue on the journey that my Creator set me on.  He has been more faithful than my mortal mind can comprehend.  When I think of the arc of change my uncle and aunt are on, and the youthful reality they will always have, I see not so much an empty nest, but a full one.  Full of hope, I wait as my characters go out into the unknown.

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