I've struggled to know what to write while I wait, not patiently at all, for my book to come back to me. I've joined a couple of groups on Facebook for people like me who are writing, or have written, memoirs, and in being part of these groups I've realized that despite the years I've spent agonizing over how to present this particular piece of myself, which is a rather large piece of myself, to the world, maybe I've done it entirely wrong.
Throughout this entire process I've felt alone and isolated. I know that I'm not alone, and have not been alone, but for how often I get stuck in my own head it's really easy for me to feel this way. Who do I talk to about what I'm doing? How I'm feeling? Why I'm doing this? Who is here to reassure me that everything is going to be OK? Or that I'm even doing the right thing? I hate asking this last one, but... Would Mom be proud of me?
The truth is, I'm scared, and all I want is to call my mom and tell her about it. Ask her opinion. Ask her what she wants the world to know, or maybe what she doesn't want the world to know.
I don't want to write this next part, because the tears are starting to sting my eyes as I do, but I just want to give her a hug. What I wouldn't give for a mamma bear hug.
I told my daughter, who's turning 11 soon, wow, 11, that's insane, that I finally finished my book and found an editor to help me make it beautiful, and soon it will be published. She was so excited for me. Pure joy lit up her face, and she was proud of her mamma. My little girl, proud! I'm a little thrown off by this because sometimes I forget that I'm the mamma bear now, and yet, here's this little girl who is standing by my side rooting for her mamma to succeed.
A while back I gave her a journal, one of those hippy journals I bought from the company that plants trees when you buy their products (my favorite place to shop) and she started writing her own story. She would sit down and outline it, deciding what the chapters would look like, and how it would all flow so that her little book would be perfect. My niece started one as well. These two little girls, these two little lights in my life...
They are too young to understand what the real story is all about. My little girl, I've told her a bit about my family, as simply as I can. She remembers her Nana, and sometimes we cry together over our beautiful memories of her. Sometimes, if I can handle it, I show her pictures. Truth is, I usually can't handle it.
Despite not knowing the reason why I write, or my passion for the message of the life that I've lived, she and her cousin, they write. They write, because they are empowered to share their own stories. They are inspired by what I'm doing, even though they don't know the depths of what it all means.
Really, that's all I need. I need to see that I'm making an impact by doing this, and already, without sharing the story, or even being published yet, I am.
My story, however scary it is to share, and however nervous I am that I'm doing it all wrong, maybe the grammar won't be perfect, maybe my punctuation needs a lot of work, and maybe I don't know proper sentence structure, but it has the potential to change someone's life. Not me, the story. The story will change someone's life. It's not really my story anymore, because that's not my life anymore, so maybe it's OK to let it go a little bit.
Like a friend of mine said, the story has it's own journey to go on...
So, no more comparing to other writers and their journeys. This one is mine, and my story's journey. I'm going to take a deep breath, wish that I could hug my mamma bear, and...
Start outlining my second book.