Thursday, February 19, 2015
What Are You Supposed To Write?
I’ll wrap up my little brief writings on memoir today with a thought I had on the very basic thought of we the writer; why do we write? One of the four of us here on the blog has brought it up in one form or another before. Today I bring it up yet again in another way, hopefully without running you off.
Almost 14 months ago, I started a transportation company that takes Medicaid patients to and from doctor visits here in Indianapolis and actually throughout the entire state of Indiana. I work closely with the State of Indiana and with several hospitals here in the Indianapolis area. My business has grown tremendously and I added a second driver about six weeks ago. I am also proud to say the State of Indiana has rated my company as one of the highest in customer service of its kind in the state.
I say all this because if I were still in pain I would never have taken the chance to even start this business. I would have failed. No patience, no confidence, and my anger would have gotten the best of me rapidly. Between my anger at myself and my depression, there is no way I could have operated a business like this, let alone make something like this grow.
The last five years of my battle with pain found me discovering God. I am a quiet Christian and not a “Bible thumper” so I will not preach to you here. Relax. I will tell you this and I have said it before, for the vast majority of time I was in pain, if it had not been for my wife, I would be dead. She pulled me through it just by her being there for me. The last five years, when the pain was at its worst and my depression was its darkest, my faith kept me going. I believed there had to be a way out.
What is the point to all this? My business doesn’t happen unless there WAS a way out, unless there WAS a happy ending. One thing has to happen and then another and then another. They did.
Why do we write? Why do YOU write? To tell a story that is stuck inside you? To sell a million copies? To become that next famous writer? There is absolutely nothing wrong with any of those reasons. Even the last one. I am a dreamer too. I do it all the time. We wouldn’t have most of the inventions on this planet if we didn’t have dreamers.
Why do I write this book? Because I think I have a very unique story to tell. Lana and I went through a very tough journey and survived. She is my best friend, my partner of 34 years, and my hero. Do I expect to sell a ton of books? No. I will self-publish it. Reality says when you do that, it takes a while to sell a lot with a lot of luck. I am hoping to sell to reach people with chronic pain and depression, to help maybe a few to lift them up, to show others there may be a way out if they keep looking.
I’m one of those guys who thinks things happen for a reason. I look at things backwards. I have a business that takes low income people who are sick to the doctor. Some of these people are in a lot of pain. Before that I was a cab driver in pain, stuck in debt, drowning in depression, wanting to die. The pain officially began in 1979 and went full time in 1987, ending in 2013. The depression began in 1994.
I look at the way things are now, the ways things happened to me, and there are a lot more details, and all I can say is, this all can’t be an accident. Stuff like this can be said for each of us. Something is meant for all of us. Maybe my experience can help others in some way with depression and chronic pain. Maybe I am supposed to write this book. I have no idea. What are you supposed to write? What is the story you are supposed to tell?