Voltas in Literature and Life: The Larger Truth 2.0

In the literature world, the volta is referred to as the turn.  It’s the shift in a work, or the point of dramatic change.  Voltas don’t just occur in literature; they occur in life as well.  I believe a volta to be a point or event on a person’s timeline that drastically changes them—for the good or the bad.  I believe that we all have a volta, and maybe even more than one.  But for sure, there is one major event that completely changes who you are.

I have mine.  It’s always there in the background now, quietly humming away.  Sometimes it’s louder than at other times.  But it’s always there.  I fear it always will be.  And I can’t discuss it.  But where I lack in discussion, I compensate with writing.  Writing has given me a small edge.  Even though a large portion of what I write can never be shared and is just for me, I’ve found my own way to talk about what happened without actually having to speak.  The how and the where and the why don’t matter in the slightest; it just matters that I can write it, get it down, and get it out.  Getting the words out is the first step to healing, be they written or verbal.

I tell myself that I will share my memoir some day, in it’s entirety.  But I worry I might be too scared.  I feel like my story could mean something to people, and I truly struggle with that.  On the one hand, if sharing could help somebody else, shouldn’t it be done?  But on the other hand, would it just put a giant neon spotlight on me and all of my faults?  And on that note, are they even my faults, really?  Or are they the faults of others?  In what universe did it become acceptable to place the blame solely on myself?  I think about it all the time.  I worry about how I would be judged if people knew; I worry that I’ve broken the mold and will never be able to put it back together.  I worry that I don’t fit in with others the way I should; I worry that I never will.  I worry that people will not know what to say; I worry that they will say too much.

I worry that they will confirm my belief that what happened was my fault, as others have.  And I do not want to take that chance.  So I just don’t speak about it.

Society, whether we like it or not, dictates much of what we say.  There are many things that are deemed unacceptable to speak about, things that could get a person pounced upon verbally and emotionally for daring to bring them up.  So much in life comes with a stigma attached.  And who decided that that was okay?  Who decided that it was acceptable to dictate what other people should and should not be allowed to do?  Who decided that it was okay to look down on people because of their experiences?

Worse yet, who listened?  Well, I did.  I still do.  I wish that I could be strong enough to speak.  But I’m not.  I’m not strong at all.

When does it become okay to talk about things?  Will I always be writing them?  And is it okay to never let myself have that physical voice?

I’m not a girl; I’m not a woman; I’m not a victim of any kind.  I’m just a writer.  That’s all I want.  That’s all I’ll ever want.  And I hope that as long as I can write, I’ll be just fine.

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