The True North of Memoir

I didn’t realise revising my memoir would be this hard or take this long, but now I see what I’m here to learn. 

As I reread one of the though chapters I wondered, was it the abuse, or that fear we all feel when something unacceptable and wrong happens to us at an age before we have the words to describe and share our experience with anyone, that is the center of my story? I’m not taking away from the pain I felt at the time, I see that its real, nor do I dispute the fact that what happened to me was wrong on so many levels, it’s the core of what we have come to know as #metoo.

As children, we love our parents even when they fail us. As we grow into adulthood and recognise their shortcomings, even neglect, love can give way to anger, frustration and hurt over how they failed to protect and comfort us. How they scoffed at our pleads and told us to get on with it – when a comforting hug was all we needed – or when they laughed when we shared our tender teenage feelings. They did not see me for who I was and so started my journey of becoming someone I hoped they could accept. On that journey, I sailed further and further away from my true self. It’s choppy water full of pain as I failed, again and again, at getting the acceptance I craved. 

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Fear

Today feels like starting all over agin.

The surge of fear swells up from my gut like burning indigestion. Halting my breath as if I’m reacting to a tiger about to eat me alive. Striking at my hip and shoulder where I carry my emotions like numb pain.

At first, fear so vivid, I can see the tiger, before I remember to breathe.

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Reliving The Hardest Parts of Our Past

One of the hardest chapters for me to write was about what happened in a blue Volvo when I was about 5.

It’s one of those #metoo stories I never told.

Buried in my subconscious, it first raise it’s ugly head, when in my teens, my boyfriend and I played at having sex.

When authors talk about it taking a year, or more, to write a book, they’re not wrong, For it’s stories like these that slows us down.

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