The loss of a loved one is both tragic and virtually inevitable, and so it is easy to see why so many people have used writing as a way to process their emotions in times of grieving. It is an experience both tragic and personal, making each essay about it different from every other. In a recent piece in the New York Times, CALA instructor Sara Lukinson reflects on the passing of her sister. She writes about how her grieving is not a process of moving on and forgetting, but is an attempt to come to terms with the death.
As the weeks went by, my sorrow took the form of a solitary retreat with no idea where to go or why. A year passed and early one winter morning, I was in bed staring at the white walls of the sky. We had been a family of two, so the answer to letting go of my sister was still no.
In the end, she finds the love of her friends is able to draw her out of isolation.
Sara Lukinson will begin teaching at the Center for Applied Liberal Arts in Spring 2018 with a course called Autobiography: Inside the Heart and Soul of Another. The course will teach aspiring writers how to reflect on their experiences to create unique and engaging work on their own lives, the same way Lukinson has in writing this piece.