By Nancy Mccabe
One evening in 1990, a stranger reduce the display out of Nancy McCabe's bed room window whereas she slept and shone a flashlight into her eyes as she woke. a number of weeks later, her father got here down with transitority amnesia. even though unrelated, those occasions turned associated in her brain, sweeping out from less than her the basics many people take without any consideration: safeguard, freedom, the steadiness of reminiscence, and a basic oblivion to mortality. After the Flashlight guy is the tale of ways one writer got here to phrases with those reports that threw her existence right into a complete new gentle: the self-defense periods, rape trouble 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 became opposed to her as a strange weapon grew to become in its place a metaphorical software that blazed her course, the impetus to reclaim, recast, and inform her personal tales, getting to know her personal strength to reinvent her imaginative and prescient of her existence.
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Additional resources for After the Flashlight Man: A Memoir of Awakening
I had just moved to Springfield that summer, forty-five minutes from my parents’ lake house near Branson. Up till then, I’d rarely visited my parents there. Now, Mom and Dad were eager to show me the sights, catching me up on what I’d missed. As we strolled through Silver Dollar City, Dad kept referring to times when I was little that we had visited this Ozark theme park, this tourist trap. But as the wheel cut through the water in its lazy revolution, I felt no flicker of interest, no stir of memory.
The only girl among brothers, I found these interactions exotic. My mother and her sisters had been little girls less than thirty miles from Rocky Ridge Farm during the years that Laura Ingalls Wilder was there writing her first books. We’d all practically memorized those books. Jody and I grew up re-enacting our favorite parts, making long skirts out of sheets and pretending that our beds were covered wagons. I was thirteen the last summer that Aunt Shirley was able to travel, the summer that she took Jody and me to the places Laura Ingalls Wilder lived and wrote about.
I was transfixed by the story of the woman who didn’t speak Russian but claimed to have the same scars, birthmarks, ears, feet, handwriting, and facial proportions as the youngest daughter of Russia’s last Czar. I had been through obsessions with time travel and with children raised by wolves, gazelles, and apes. For the amnesiac, the time traveler, the feral child, the world becomes a minefield requiring constant negotiation to heal the rifts between The One that Got Away familiarity and strangeness.