One thing I’m always fascinated with is how we get from Point A to Point B in life.
If you think about it, when you were a little kid, did you imagine that your life would look exactly as it does now?
I certainly didn’t. My life looks nothing like 8-year-old Chase Connor thought it would. Probably because 8-year-old Chase was a stupid asshole?
Where we started and where we end up are often the complete antithesis of each other. That can be good, bad, or make no difference at all, but it is surprising when you think about it for a minute.
However, when you really delve into how things were versus how they are, you begin to realize something even more important.
It wasn’t the starting point. It wasn’t the destination.
It was the journey.
I had a fairly happy early childhood. My adult life and marriage are…the happiest I’ve ever been in my entire life.
But they aren’t all that interesting. I don’t know about the rest of you, but my adult life is fairly banal. I get up, make breakfast and coffee for my husband and myself, we eat, we talk and laugh, we get ready for our days, and we both start work.
We have lunch.
We finish work and make dinner.
We watch T.V. or read a book. We talk about the future. We play with our dog. We cuddle. Give each other kisses. Tease each other mercilessly. Sometimes we dance in the kitchen to Sleep on the Floor by The Lumineers or Stardust by Nat King Cole.
We tell silly jokes. We go grocery shopping. We have sex. We just enjoy having our person.
It’s amazing. But interesting? Not really.
What we went through that led to us slow dancing in the kitchen on a random Tuesday night is what is interesting.
The struggles. The fights. The lovemaking. The anger. The forgiveness. The compromise. Learning to communicate. The travels. The big decisions. The health. The illness. The timing of our individual existences that caused both to collide.
That’s the interesting stuff.
It’s one of the reasons that a lot of stories end with “And they lived happily ever after.” or it is assumed when the last word is read. Because what comes after finding the purpose of one’s existence and leaning into it is pretty boring.
Dishes. Housework. Random fights over who drank the last of the milk and didn’t put it on the shopping list. Waking up to dog poop in the hallway even though your pupper is trained. Annoyance that you haven’t had a meal you love in forever because your partner hates it.
It’s all booooooooring. Amazing. But boring.
Boring is great. I’ve never been afraid of a small life. In fact, I think that’s what 8-year-old Chase Connor secretly dreamed of when he thought of his future. He just felt it was maybe not acceptable to wish for…happiness.
We’re all expected to have big dreams and ideas for the future.
Walk on the moon! Discover a new animal species! Heal the sick! Be a millionaire!
My cup runneth over with happiness. That’s always been enough for me. More than enough. It is my dream fulfilled.
But it’s boring. I get that.
So…that’s why the middle of stories is the best for me. What happens between pages 50 and 300, to put too fine a point on it.
Beginnings are often exciting. Endings are often sad. But the journey between the two is what makes things interesting.
As a writer, I guess that’s what I try to deliver. A journey. To take the reader on an adventure through a period of a character’s life. Show them how a character started, and end with how they’ve changed–all while showing how and why that change occurred.
Change is fascinating.
It’s also what I look for as a reader. I want to go on an adventure. I want to get invested in a character so that I care about their change.
I want the journey.
Because…in the end…if we’re lucky…we simply end up happy. And that’s blissfully boring.
Tremendous Love & Thanks,