“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”
― Maya Angelou
Five years ago this week, I started writing in this space. October 2009 brought many transitions: losing my father after a four-year battle with cancer, moving to Arizona after living in my hometown all my life and working out other personal transitions of work and motherhood and responsibilities. The rumbling in my core needed a place to land so I sought out writing as a path, not really knowing that every time I wrote I carved out a home and place of refuge.
I say this often because it is true. Writing saved me and continues to save me. My thoughts are too much for me. I catch myself thinking about the past, what was, what isn’t and throwing darts into the future trying to predict where the next curve might appear in my life. What I try to negotiate in this space is how to navigate flight between the moment I throw the dart and when it lands. Sometimes it is a place I understand, while other times, I step inside a black hole where I struggle to find my footing. The accompanying loneliness in the darkness creates its own earthquake and I try to climb my way out by writing about it.
Writing will always thread pieces of me together, the former and the present and the future. I may not always understand it as it occurs, but the messy moments always present lessons that I am able to capture when I reflect and then write about them. In the last five years, writing pushed me to pay attention, especially to those parts I disliked or avoided for fear of confronting a place that is wholly uncomfortable.
The lessons I’ve learned: The details matter. Perseverance counts. You can feel less alone. Sometimes another person will raise their hand and say, me too.
Thank you for letting me unravel my stories. For listening. For reading. For commenting.
And most of all, for saying, you aren’t alone.
Image: Beach, past and present by amira_a via Flickr