Saturday, May 28, 2011

Fictionalized Life

I have always written fiction. The first story I remember writing was when I was seven years old. I've had some long dry periods, but I have written fiction my whole life.

I was just thinking about how everyone does...create fiction, that is. If you're a mother, you've been fictionalized by your kids. My kids have created stories of who I am and what I am to them. They're not interested in knowing me. Or maybe they are, but maintaining the fiction overrules getting to know me because the fiction serves a vital purpose in their day-to-day realities. I'm saying that again because it seems so contradictory but isn't. The fiction upholds what they believe to be reality. My younger daughter, especially, uses fictionalized accounts of me to make the drama of her life a tactile experience to herself and anyone who will listen to her. The result is that every time I see her, I feel like a lamb tied to a stake. There are reasons I don't try to see her.

My mother, rather than talk to me, fictionalized who I was to exonerate herself from taking responsibility for the fictional me. I, in turn, fictionalized my mother in an attempt to explain why she acted the way she did.

My conclusion is that all is fiction. We never really know anyone. Where memory is concerned, the brain is a flawed organ.