Examine the box at the back of your mind’s closet. You know the one. The things you don’t miss. The things you want to forget. These things also shape us. They carry with them stories. The dark places we don’t want to revisit.
Why is horror such a successful genre? Easy. It invites us into the dark closets of other in order to flush out the demons we all recognize. We don’t want to face OUR demons but we can do so with someone else’s from the safety of the movie theater or our sofa.
The dark places aren’t meant to be forgotten. They aren’t meant to be brooded over or allowed to fester. That creates instability and bitter anger. They are meant to be handled gently, with care, and let go. Like thin skinned balloons they are released in the air, one at a time, and once high enough, they crack. Pop! Disperse.
Some of us root around in other’s closets to find boxes of baggage. Some of us wallow in our own. Others lock the door and bask in reflected sunlight from others because the shadow of our secrets won’t allow us to absorb the light of freedom. We smile. We try. We fail.
What are the dark things you carry? Think hard. Have you let them go? Have you made peace with your demons? We will never be perfect and some things are impossible to forgive or forget. But we can face them, look them in the eye and see them for what they really are. When that is done, they lose power and they can be let go. Unfortunately we are also the dark things we carry.
Let them out into the open. They lose their power that way. Write about them. Expose them. Show them who’s boss.
Happy Halloween! Go be something fabulous, frightening or freakish. It’s your one night to be anything you want to be.