Write a personal reflection on chapter 8 of Medicine River.

In chapter 8 of Medicine River, we learn about Will's past relationship with Susan. This helps the reader understand his current situation with Louise better. Will has been hurt in the past by Susan, and now it appears that Will may be hurting again. Many readers will be able to relate to the heartache that relationships can cause.

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Naturally, you will have your own personal reflection and thoughts on chapter 8, but the following ideas may help you compose your own ideas.

In this chapter, we discover information about Will’s past relationship with Susan. He met Susan through his work, and it seemed to be going fairly well. They went out once or twice a week, and she started moving in some of her belongings to his place. From what we can infer, Susan seemed to make Will happy. Unfortunately, Will’s happiness did not last long.

One night when he called Susan, her child answered the phone and revealed that her mom, Susan, couldn’t talk, but her dad was available. We can tell this was clearly a shock to Will because he then referred to himself as Susan’s “business associate” instead of a man she was dating. Will was understandably bothered by this and tried to call back multiple times that night, but every time the line was always busy.

Learning this information about Will’s past relationship provides insight on how Will must be feeling right now with his current relationship with Louise. Susan clearly hurt him, and now he is going through the same pain with Louise. Although Will does not outright admit this, Harlen continually calls him “depressed” throughout the chapter. At the end of the chapter, Will is laying in the dark with “the phone ringing busy in [his] ear.”

Sadly, it seems that the past may be repeating itself. Since the author revealed that the line was busy in his past and current relationship, we know that this has significant meaning to Will. Some readers may be able to relate to the past repeating itself. Additionally, this may inspire readers to reflect on their own past and current relationships. Many people will find that they are able to empathize with the pain Will experiences in his relationships.

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