After the Flashlight Man: A Memoir of Awakening by Nancy Mccabe

By Nancy Mccabe

One evening in 1990, a stranger reduce the monitor out of Nancy McCabe's bed room window whereas she slept and shone a flashlight into her eyes as she woke. a couple of weeks later, her father got here down with transitority amnesia. even though unrelated, those occasions turned associated in her brain, sweeping out from below her the basics many folks take without any consideration: security, freedom, the steadiness of reminiscence, and a normal oblivion to mortality. After the Flashlight guy is the tale of ways one writer got here to phrases with those reviews that threw her lifestyles right into a complete new gentle: the self-defense sessions, rape situation volunteer paintings, writing, and meditation that served as checkpoints alongside her therapeutic trip whereas she re­ tested occasions from her early life and relationships with friends and family. finally, a flashlight grew to become opposed to her as a weird and wonderful weapon grew to become as an alternative a metaphorical software that blazed her course, the impetus to reclaim, recast, and inform her personal tales, learning her personal energy to reinvent her imaginative and prescient of her existence.

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I bled. ” “Your dad won’t fix it,” Mom added. “You should watch where you’re going,” Dad said. ” Later that day, I too scraped against that nail and blood dotted up along the thin scratch. None of us made a move to remove the nail ourselves, though. My parents had bought the lake house and started spending weekends there when I was in college. My brothers, aunts, uncles, and cousins scheduled visits; I didn’t. I was busy with classes, my job, and my boyfriend, and increasingly tired of jokes about my supposed inability to park a car or distinguish stars from streetlights—jokes that had become family habit.

Rain blurs all the streetlights. I haven’t been in the old apartment at night since the one Shelley spent with me. I know rationally just as I knew then that the Flashlight Man won’t be there waiting. I’ll go in quickly, leave quickly, and soon I’ll be safe in my own standard-sized bed in my own new upstairs apartment with steel doors and deadbolts and chains and window rods—my new apartment with oversized windows without curtains or blinds yet, all that dark glass opening my life up to the world.

In a glass case there were two smiling china doll heads that gave me the creeps. ” Aunt Shirley asked Jody. To me, she said, “You never liked dolls. ” “I did too,” I said, but nobody was listening. Ghostwriting Before that summer, I’d read hundreds of pioneer stories and biographies like the Childhoods of Famous Americans series, orange-spined books with silhouette illustrations that told unambiguous stories about well-known people. No turmoil, no violent impulses, no knotted-up stomachs or cruel thoughts.

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