I'm back with my nose to the computer screen this week earning a living with my day job. Today I graded a batch of narrative essays. Since I've been doing this for a few years now, I can see certain trends with writing. Narrative essays tend to carry weight--personal weight from the writer. Pain, suffering, or anger resurfaces as the writers relive things they probably wish they could forget.
I read these essays for hours. After many paragraphs about loss and despair, I start feeling it as well. I suppose I am giving these students a service. Not only are they building writing skills (I hope), but they also have the opportunity to unload their griefs (a phrase modified from Sylvia Plath poem). I am starting to feel like Sylvia as I experience the pain right along with the authors.
I am not being paid an therapist's wage, yet this seems my job...at least for today.
I think I'll go and read "The Moon and the Yew Tree" now.