I am currently reading “The Story Within” by Laura Oliver. In the third chapter, she talks about contradictions and how they can be the focus of a story. She asks the reader to think about a few contradictions that we could use, trying to find out why both sides are equally true. She example she uses is this: when her third baby was born, and she found out that it was a girl, she felt disappointment. She and her husband had wanted to find out naturally what the gender was, and they didn’t care if it was either. For nine months, she had pictured both a boy and a girl, and the pictures were both equally real. When she found out that it was a girl, she was disappointed because now the baby boy she had been picturing would never come.
At first, I wasn’t sure if I could think of any. Then I thought about the story I am writing now: Horusia looks up to Dane like a big brother, or even a father, despite the fact that Dane tortures him. He loves Dane because he had been the one constant person in his life for three entire years, and he didn’t want that to change. And then I thought about my own life, what kinds of feelings were contradictory. I thought of my own father…how I really, really didn’t like him because of the kinds of things he had put me and my family through. And yet how I miss him! Both feelings are equally true. I love him because he was my earthly father, and I don’t love him because he was a horrible father.
What about you? What kinds of contradictory feelings do you feel?