A Mate for Your Soul – Writing 201 Challenge

soul

‘My boyfriend’s thinking about marriage.’
I could feel the tears tickling my eyes already, so I took a deep breath.
‘…and not with me.’

I focused on his face, a little unsure that I did the right thing by choosing him, out of all the possible persons, to discuss such a delicate issue with. I’m not sure what made me tell him about that, actually – I tend not to talk about such problems. But his voice echoed with concern when he pronounced the same words that have been haunting me for a while, and suddenly all my incertitude dissolved. ‘Soul-mates…?’

I didn’t expect that, but I admit I should have seen it coming. To be honest, I didn’t even expect him to listen, to understand, or at least to try to understand. But I suppose it’s always shocking to realise your younger brother is not so young anymore. You blink once, and he’s grown so much… I forced myself to smile a little. ‘Perhaps yes, perhaps no. We will never know’.
‘We will eventually, in the end… Remember all the fairy-tales daddy used to tell us? The ones with happy ending, when the princess meets her soul mate and everything’s perfect… ‘

Yeah… That’s not how life really is. I mean… I’m not sure I believe in such things. Not anymore. I doubt two souls on this planet can match perfectly, like two puzzle pieces, and even if they are, I consider souls to be immortals; then who can guarantee my soul-mate and I would live in the same… century?! Plus I don’t see how you decide you’ve found your soul-mate. Maybe tomorrow you’ll meet someone new, who matches even more than your current ‘soul-mate’. I think the only thing that we can do is to find someone suitable for us, while we are aware that there may be others on this planet who are probably far more suitable. And people do change in time. No matter what they say, they really do. I guess it takes a while to see who changes accordingly to yourself, so that you continue to ‘match’ along the whole life.

It would be easier not to believe in soul-mates, I guess. Cause if you believe, you’ll spend your whole life searching for him. And you’ll miss all the others. All the others who you decide they’re not for you, cause you’re waiting for something else, without even knowing what. Something special, I guess. But perhaps that someone special just needs a chance from you, and you’re not giving it cause you decide you want to keep searching. Or waiting, or whatever. Maybe the guy you refused when he offered to help you with the shopping bags deserved a chance. Maybe that creepy guy who keeps talking to you isn’t that creepy. Maybe you should go outside rather than waiting for a miracle to fall from the sky.

I remember a book (now a really sweet movie) about true friendship and true love, about old childhood friends and their quest to find that best someone for each of them, when perhaps what they were searching for was right in front of their eyes… Cause what if you won’t find a pot of gold ‘Where Rainbows End‘, as the old legend says, but someone special instead? You can never know what waits for you there, somewhere. And another nice ‘quest’ is ‘In search of a love story‘, which made me realise that a romantic life which seems perfect may not be what you really want, and that being a ‘hopeless romantic’ which compares guys with personalities from books is quite a bad idea. There’s no prince charming out there. There’s no bad guy either, they’re all a mixture of both.

However, if you think you’ve found someone that is worth fighting for, good for you. Fight for him. Cause if soul-mates do exist, then nothing will stay in your way. But just make sure he’s the right one, for that moment, cause no one knows what will happen if-

‘Do you believe in soul-mates then?’
I blinked, still lost amongst my thoughts. I don’t like when someone interrupts my chain of thoughts, but-
‘I mean for yourself, not for your ex’.
That last word made my heart sank a little, exactly what I needed to make my mind focus. I even managed to force a smile.
‘A little faith didn’t hurt anyone, right?’ Although as soon as the words left my lips, I knew that wasn’t true – I could feel it, actually. Feel the faith going away, while disappointment took its place; and disappointment hurts.

‘Do you?’

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Voice Without a Face

Last month I took part into a writing challenge called Writing101 – I haven’t written too often for that one, but I still managed to publish two short posts: one about a mysterious letter and the other about personalities that are so different, yet have so much in common.

Writing201 has started this week, and the first workshop is about finding our unique perspective in writing, our own voice. It immediately reminded me about an interesting question someone asked me the other day:

‘Why don’t you have a mouth?’

He was obviously referring to my profile picture (click here for a full-size image), and I know the question was somehow funny, but it made me think. Indeed, I don’t have a mouth in that photo. It’s a drawing of Violet B., my favourite character from my favourite books – it belongs to winsane on deviantart, no copyright infringement intended – and I am unsure about the reason why the mouth is missing. But I’ve realised I don’t need a mouth in order to have a voice, if that makes sense. Just like Les yeux sans visage – Eyes without a face… Cause if you look closely, you’ll see that Violet possess something as powerful as a mouth, or, why not, perhaps even more powerful when it comes to the message that is being delivered: a feather.

It’s somehow a difference between a message that is written and one that is spoken. It’s much easier to write, but I’m not sure it’s always the right way (I’ve explained a similar idea here). Cause if you look at Violet and mentally draw her a mouth, how would that be? A wide smile? 😀 A shy one? 🙂 Or perhaps the expression of sadness? 😦 Or broken-hearted? It depends, it could actually portrait almost any emotion; but no matter her appearance, she’s still writing. She may write funny thinks while she’s sad, or sad things while she’s happy. You’ll only have the written message and the ‘voice’ associated with it, not the actual voice which would quite clearly provide details about her feelings. But it’s still a voice, a perspective of a writer. You can never be sure if that’s her real voice, or if it’s the feather which puts those words on the paper.

You can quite easily change voices when you’re writing. The same way you do when you switch languages – if you can speak more than one, of course. And just as it takes time to learn a language, the same way it takes time to find your voice. ‘Let her find her own voice, even if she has to try on the voices of a hundred others first to do so‘, I was quoting in my post about writing. And I know it’s true, but the same way you learn a language only by speaking it, you discover your writing perspective by… writing.

And the main quality of a writing voice is, I believe, to be capable of spreading certain feelings. If the reader can actually feel what you’re talking about, then you’re on the right way to finding a voice that’s suitable for both of you. A voice spreads feelings the same way the appearance does. ‘Are you okay?’ is the most confusing question ever, cause it means that someone perceived some feelings from you, a certain sensation, which may or may not be what you intended. And when a random man asked me this question, while we were waiting at a traffic light and I probably had a lost look in my eyes, I blinked. What wouldn’t I be okay? Well, I could think of a few reasons, but still. What made that person ask me that?… And I remembered another quote from Sherlock… ‘Are you okay? Don’t just say you are, because I know what that means, looking sad when you think no one can see you‘…

The workshop is about finding the voice that describes what you want to describe in the best way possible. But does that voice match you as a person? Does it complete you, rather than splitting your personality in two? Does it show the others who you really are, instead of giving them false sensations the way a deceiving appearance does? And most importantly, does it make you, you?…