So there was that.
Some had asked whether it was drawn from personal experience or mostly fiction, and my answer was that it is, as most of my work, a little of both. I’ve always maintained that we draw at least partially from our life experiences in writing, and that piece was no exception. I’ve been on both sides of similar conversations, and found myself thinking about it a lot.
It came up at our small group a couple weeks back, when our group was asked if there was something they could change about themselves, what would it be? My response was, “I didn’t want to be as cynical.” As much fun as a cynical wit can be, genuine cynicism can be very poisonous, and affect our outlooks in ways that we don’t always see.
It’s not easy. We’re in a cynical society, where assuming the worst is often the safest route for anyone to take, in so many paths of our lives. Genuine hope or optimism is met with mockery, and squelched before others can feel the same. And missed opportunities can lead to self-loathing, another acidic trait.
I know I’ve missed chances because of fear, or cynicism. But I can’t get stuck in that. We need to have hope, and be honest about ourselves. How else can we break the cycle, not get bitter or stuck where we are? How many are there who are afraid, secretly heartbroken but not wanting to admit to it, putting up a wall of apparent indifference?