Saturday, March 16, 2013

Mothers, Monsters, and Writing with the Window Open

By Keith N Fisher

One of the last times I talked with my mother in law was confrontational. She accused me of turning my wife’s affections away from her. I rose up on my haunches and tried to point out how controlling she had been over the years. I tried to address her problem instead of convincing her that I had nothing to do with my wife’s opinion.

I don’t want to make you suffer through an airing of all the dirty underwear. Just let me say, it was difficult. Now, my mother in law is gone. After five years of suffering from Alzheimer’s, she went home. I’m surprised to feel regret.

Have you ever noticed that men address the problem rather than deal with emotions? I battled with logic for years and alienated many people. I always wondered, why can’t people just use logic? During the last five years, I’ve learned that people, (especially women), don’t want to fix it. They just want to vent their feelings and get empathy from their companion.

Since I started writing about women, for women to read, I’ve made a lot of progress. I don’t mean to say I’m perfect, I still leap for a solution to the problem, but I’m getting better at listening. I deal with emotions and try to impart empathy.

Some might accuse me of becoming a better woman, but I think I’m becoming a better man. I wish I’d learned this lesson before my mother in law got sick. I’ve been compiling pictures for a slideshow as part of the funeral, and it’s hard. I keep wondering how the vibrant young girl became the woman she was. I hope that she’ll forgive me of my insensitivity.

On a lighter note, many of you know I like to write in the cab of my truck. It’s kind of fun to watch a snowstorm while you work on the next plot twist. Lately, however, we’ve been having some great weather where I live. It’s even better to write with the window down. Especially after a winter like we’ve had.

Good luck with your writing—see you next week.

1 comment:

C.J. said...

Keith, I loved this observation, regrets and all. We're all still trying to figure things out. I'm sorry about your mother-in-law and wish you peace.