It might be easier to ask the question, “Why not write?” But at the bottom of everything, I write simply because I have things to say. Is anything I have to say really important enough to matter to anyone else? The only way to really answer that question is to write and see what comes.
I have always had a hard time keeping mouth shut. When I was a kid, I got into fights due to my propensity to comment on everything. You would think that I would have learned. Well, I still have the same problem; I still comment on everything.
My mind is always racing through every situation forming all of these eventual down line scenarios. I know I make my wife crazy with my constant analysis of everything. The fact that I am writing this is a testament to her kindness and tolerance; I am somewhat surprised that I am not buried out in the back in the pond. Questioning everything has always been my status quo. I have always been a learner and believed that learning requires questions and analysis.
Now that I have gotten a little older and more experienced, I have realized that perhaps I have a duty to provoke thought and discussion. Our society seems to be losing its ability to slowly digest news and events and then draw well thought out conclusions from analyzing these events. We now seem to instantly form opinions (mostly uninformed) from reacting to the news and events of the day. If I can inject some thought provoking discussions from my comments, opinions and conclusions, then, just possibly, I can help one person to see things more clearly.
And there are a lot of stories to tell. Maybe the stories will entertain my daughter and show her some things about her Dad that she never knew. Perhaps the grandchildren could benefit from a very different perspective. A friend who is going through a rough time may not feel as alone after reading about an experience I had long ago.
Then there is a certain therapeutic satisfaction and calm from organizing my racing thoughts. The writing seems to bring order to the stream of thoughts. It slows things down, and then I can analyze better to develop a more clear perspective.
One of these days I will be dead; I will end. They say it happens to all of us. That is what the evidence shows. Thinking about death is frankly pretty tough. It just plain sucks. When I am gone, no one will give a rat’s rear about any of my stuff. Face it; we are all a quirky composite of our experiences and genetics. So my stuff just won’t have the same meaning to anyone else as it had to me.
But there are two things that may have some real meaning to others after I meet my demise. I have always loved photography, and I think I am not too bad at it. After I am nothing but dirt, maybe someone will see some of those photos and they will evoke some memories. Maybe those photos will remind someone of something they loved. Those photos were taken by me, so they would obviously have some of my perspective in them.
But my words are me. They are my feelings, my beliefs, my struggles, and my triumphs. The words are my humor and my anger. They are my loves and my passions. So perhaps the real reason I write is because I can’t face the fact that someday I will end. The words will allow me to live on.