My book has been available for two weeks and I’m now getting some feedback from friends. It does my heart good to hear people say not only that they liked it, but that it made them cry. I cried when I wrote parts of it (not that I let anyone see that, I was home alone). It feels really validating that I could express those emotions, feelings, and ideas with words. That I could actually touch someone’s heart.
I am not a very emotional person, or I should say, I am good at keeping my emotions hidden. I come by it naturally. My family is not very demonstrative. We’re close but we all have difficulty expressing our feelings through outward displays of touching and/or words of affection. My husband’s family, on the other hand, are constantly hugging, holding, and saying I love you. They cry at the drop of a Hallmark card. At family events we joke about it and of course, they cry as we do. I have become the designated spokesperson because I don’t cry. Most of my in-laws can’t complete a prayer without getting choked up. My brother-in-law labeled me the “cold hearted one” (all in good humor). And that is what I tell people; I’m just cold hearted.
The truth is though, I’m not. I feel things, I just don’t show things. Not even to those closest to me. But when I write, I can put all those thoughts, feelings and emotions into my characters. Essentially, I can hide behind them and no one will know how I feel, because it’s not me, it’s them. That’s also why when my book was finally accepted for publication I had several moments of panic to think that people would be reading it and finding out about the real me, which I’m so much more comfortable keeping hidden. Having someone say they cried when this or that happened in the story, it’s like a connection is made. I may not actually be putting my arms around someone. or crying with them, but we’ve connected emotionally. It does my cold heart good!