Watching the breakfast news yesterday morning, while stuffing my face with a crumpet, I saw a man with cancer talking about his “journey”. It was very moving to say the least (though it didn’t prevent me from eating my crumpet!) and I felt the appropriate emotions while I watched and listened.
But after a while I noticed something. I was analysing the man and the news presenters reactions. I was watching them and taking mental notes. I stopped myself immediately and turned the TV off.
I’ve heard of people who can detach themselves from what’s going on around them in order to be able to report it objectively and with a clear head. I’m not talking sociopath detached here, not nearly that extreme! And I understand that in certain jobs that is a great ability to have.
But not for me. I’ve always been very in touch with my emotions, I wear my heart on sleeve as they say, and it worried me that I was more interested in the why of the events than just simply experiencing it. It’s not a bad thing to understand the why’s and how’s but emotion is what drives my creativity, it’s what gives me fuel for my passion and it’s what makes us all human.
So I made myself swear an oath yesterday morning (once I’d finished my crumpet): I must always allow myself to be affected by anything that has the power to move me, whether it be sadness or anger or anything in between and to embrace the feelings because that is what I relish so much about writing and art. It’s the freedom of expression.