Whenever I struggle to keep up with my plans I ask myself; – have I broken down the steps into small enough chunks?’
I’ve been writing this book for more than a year and only now do I start to see all the pieces come together, – well, – sort off. Learning to dissect a big goal – like writing to publish a book, have thought me to break my plans into minute – sometimes 10 minute – sessions. It’s a journey that has taken much longer than I thought it would, and it’s been a lot tougher than I ever believed it could be.
When I first thought about writing in earnest, all I saw was delightful hours tapping away, writing a perfectly told story. I have learned that there is no such thing as a perfectly told story, there is no such thing as perfect.
What I have learned is to make choices about when I believe my work is good enough. And I have learned that it takes many, many drafts before a story is good enough to publish.
Emphasise on Good Enough, – I’m not talking about perfection. Perfection is the voice of Resistance and Fear, voices I know intimately. They drove me mad with their ‘not good enough’ chatter in the beginning, – and they were right.
The first challenge on my writer’s journey was to silence their voices long enough to allow myself time and space to practice. Today, before I publish this, I invite them in and welcome their view on whether these words are good enough.
I cannot write a memoir, that is good enough, without digging deep and delving into my character’s internal life. And because I’m writing about my life with my parents, I must aspire to understand what their childhood was like, and how it felt to be them as children. Only then can I make sense of the choices they made and the way our relationships unfolded as parents and child.
I also have to dive deep into my own childhood emotions, and those of my teens, when I found myself in the eye of one shame shit-storm after another. My every thought and reaction purely driven by emotions, out of control hormones and etiquette drilled into me from generations past and present. Driven to create drama, feeling self-pity, misunderstood and righteous all at the same time. When I get to this depth in my story there can only be forgiveness and compassion for all my characters. From here I reach a new understanding of Truth, and it is from this place of depth my memoir, when it’s good enough, emerge from. But all this takes a lot of time and I often struggle to keep going, especially if I haven’t broken down the steps into small enough chunks.
Good things come to those who wait’ the saying goes, I’m not so sure about that. I think it’s more like; ‘Magic happens when you practice.’ That’s why I’m making my New Year resolution plain and simple, to just practice.
I will continue to practice making the steps to my goals small enough, and I will keep practicing writing and making choices about when my work is good enough to share. Then I will practice publishing.
And just like last year, and the year before, I will continue to practice love and compassion and truth-telling, and gratitude because practicing these things makes me feel oh so good.
Much Love and Light
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