Fighting the Fight

In the last week, I’ve been delving deep into the new story I’ve been writing, returning to the real world with some profound messages about relationships. I’ve slowly begun to understand that this story arc will be about the way relationships change over time. Do they develop from love into warmth and friendship, or do they burn out to indifference and fall apart? Or is there an in-between state into which some couples settle? Is there a continuum, in which we waver through many states over time?

My favorite line from this weeks writing is this:
“Hyung, we don’t just fight the fights we know we’ll win.”

It comes from a chapter in which the main character (MC) and two of his friends are discussing the MC’s long-term partner. The MC, distraught because his love of four years has developed a ‘harmless’ crush on someone else. The MC says that he doesn’t see the point in fighting for his boyfriend if, in the end, the boyfriend might simply choose the other person. That’s when the friend tells him we don’t just fight those battles in which we’re certain of the outcome. Sometimes, the point is to fight.

In my own life, this has been a struggle. I will often bow out of situations in which I know I am certain to lose. I will cut ties with friends I know will only harm me. I abandon lost causes. I even change careers when I see that there is little chance of making a real difference. Now I must consider… Are there causes for which we should fight just because someone needs to fight them?

I know there are. I know I need to be aware that, sometimes, a person’s presence in a situation can help in the long run. We can be present for a friend, or a student, or a colleague, if only for the purpose that they know we’re still beside them.

Today I’m grateful for writing, for the meditative and redemptive qualities of this particular kind of deep introspection. I’m grateful for characters who continue to change and grow and surprise me.

I’ll close this post with some quick notes on this week’s progress.

This morning I weighed in at 162.9, landing me less than one pound from my ultimate goal of 162 lbs. That means that I have lost 24.1 pounds since January 1, 2017. I have a FitBit now, which is an excellent tool to help me track my goals and to encourage activity, since most of my day is spent here in front of this computer.

My reading progress has somewhat stalled because the current book I’m reading, If On A Winter’s Night A Traveler, by Italo Calvino, hasn’t grabbed me the way a fast-paced sci-fi/fantasy book might. It’s pretty meta and surreal, so it keeps throwing me out of the narrative in weird ways. I’m driving my daughter to the Houston airport on Monday, so I intend to use the drive back to listen to the audiobook. I need to finish Winter’s Night soon, because next in my queue is a Dragonlance novel which I’m looking forward to.

Word Count-wise, I’ve stayed on track. In the last week, I wrote 8,329 words, which may be a record for this year so far. Next week, I’m writing up a freelance feature piece for A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, which is on tour with Broadway Across America. The actor I interviewed for the piece was so articulate and dynamic, I cannot wait to see this show, or write this piece.

We are only 24 days from our trip to Seoul. I’m doing my daily Korean lessons, so my ability to pick out words in conversations is about 20 in every 100, which is better than the 3 out of every 100 it was this time last year. Progress! We intend to eat a lot of delicious food and take a ton of pictures.

May you have a brilliant weekend, and if you’re a student or teacher or both, may you have an awesome Spring Break.