Emma has been interviewing various family members. So I wasn’t surprised when she wrote that she wanted to conduct another interview. Except this time she wrote that she wanted to interview me. This is part one of that interview…
Emma: What sparks your imagination more? Words? Pictures? Music?
It depends on the situation. I have been inspired and moved by all three at various times and can think of examples of each sparking my imagination. If I had to put them in order of most moving and inspiring, I would have to say visual, whether experiential as in scenic or static pictures, painted, photographs, sculpture, visual art. But even as I say this I’m thinking of music that has brought me to tears, and literature and poetry that completely captivated, even non fiction writing, particularly memoirs have completely enthralled me. Each has inspired and sparked my imagination. I don’t know that I can choose!
Emma: Who do you wish you could have known and why?
My grandfather, your Great-Grandfather. He is the one your granma, my mother speaks so highly of. It would have been nice to have had the experience of knowing him. He was also an extremely ambitious, smart and I’ve been told, fascinating man who lived a complicated and unusual life. I would have liked the opportunity to have interviewed him the way you are interviewing me.
Emma: What taught you more about life – notable happiness or terrible suffering?
In a strange way, both as they are both great teachers and I’ve experienced large doses of each. I only wish I was a faster learner so the suffering didn’t have to go on for as long as it did.
Emma: When were you decidedly happiest and when were you easily the most unhappy?
The most difficult time in my life was the years when I was bulimic. I felt as though I was watching life pass me by as I remained stuck in my obsessive-compulsive addictive behaviors. It was a terrible time of feeling I was betraying myself on a daily basis and couldn’t stop, though I wanted to more than anything. Sadly that period lasted for about 22 years. That’s an awfully long time to be so unhappy.
This period of my life is by far the happiest. I have learned and experience daily the power of gratitude, friendship, humility, family and the gift of giving back. I am so grateful for the many gifts I’ve been given – Daddy, N. and you, extended family and friendship. I have so much love in my life. I am extremely fortunate. Gratitude encourages misery to withdraw. People say it’s harder to talk about unhappiness, but I have found the opposite to be true. Misery came easily to me. Happiness I’ve had to fight for and once I caught slivers of it, I wasn’t willing to let it go.