Daphne Rose Kingma once said, “Holding on is believing that there’s only a past; letting go is knowing that there’s a future.” In the novel The Lovely Bones, the author Alice Sebold depicts that one cannot move on to new things in life unless they let go of the past. Because Abigail and Lindsey let go of the tragic memories regarding Susie’s death, they are able to move on and enjoy life, but because Mr. Harvey keeps the tokens from his past victims, he is caught and killed.
Abigail Salmon goes through many hardships after the death of her first-born daughter Susie. Even though she is scarred, upset and feels helpless, she finds a way to move on and finds happiness. She knows that the murder has happened, and she cannot change the circumstances by lamenting over it. Abigail tells Len Fenerman that she has moved on, and that she is ready to talk about her daughter’s murder normally.
“Say that again,”… “My daughter’s murder,” “No one says it. No one in the neighbourhood talks about it. People call it the ‘horrible tragedy’ or some variation on that. I just want it to be spoken out loud by somebody. To have it said aloud, I’m ready- I wasn’t ready before.” (Sebold, 148)
Abigail tells Len that she has moved on, and wants everyone else to know as well. She uses Len as a way to get over her grief. “…while my mother was granted her most temporal wish. To find a way out of her ruined heart, in merciful adultery.” (Sebold, 197) Whenever Abigail meets Len, she is able to forget about her worries for a while and although she is betraying her family by doing so, she is content and knows she is finally getting to do what she has always wanted to do when she goes to California to run a way from all her troubles. “…and my mother held on to him [Len Fenerman] as if on the other side of his kiss there could be a whole new life.” (Sebold, 152) Susie mentions that when Abigail found that she was pregnant for the third time with Buckley, she had closed off her true nature and become a different person, but by moving to California she is able to start a new life and move on. By letting go of thoughts of Susie, Abigail is able to come out of depression and start a new life and be happy.
Susie is dead, but has not yet made it into heaven yet. She is constantly watching from above in the Inbetween, missing her life on Earth.
I would lay these photographs down in my mind, those gathered from my constant watching, and I could trace how one thing- my death- connected these images to a single source. No one could have predicted how my loss would change small moments on Earth. But I held on to those moments and...