I don’t know the right words to use to start this writing happening in this very space; so I’m borrowing the classic adage of all people confused or overwhelmed by their experience of life – “I don’t know”.
There are a million entries I’ve written over the last many months, or maybe 5031, or maybe just, like, 22 or so. But they’ve all been succinctly in my head. And my head is so full it hurts. So full I’m starting to get consistent headaches.
But I couldn’t come back to using the gift of words and writing to extract things from my head and heart, and find some space to breathe, and do it the same as I tried to do before. So much has changed. Hence, most of all I just feel like I need to start placing myself here as tenderly as I can, and maybe just not publicize it. Because somehow telling the world makes it a “read me, please” space where I exist (in words anyway) instead of this blog being a place where I just am, and others can find me if they wish to connect or share in my being.
Last week I took my three perfect children to California, and whilst there to Disneyland. “The Happiest Place On Earth”.
It was awful. Just awful.
My children were tired and overwhelmed and experiencing debilitating anxiety before we made it from the front gate down to the end of Main Street. Elle wanted to go home by 10:00am. But I’d paid dearly, and expected greatly, and we stayed twelve more hours past that. What a crazy silly thing to have done! Mostly, it was a horrible trip that grew in expense with every hour, as my poor kids couldn’t live up to the energetic wish around them that they absolutely love everything. I hope we never do it again.
But, it was only a day later that the white wash of time and our wishes for what our life would be, began to take over, and I heard Disneyland being described in lovely – even sometimes flowing – delight. They loved it! They wanted to go again!
That is not, however, how things went down. I think I’m sort of glad they remember it fondly, but that is NOT the day we had at Disneyland. I say I’m “sort of glad”, but I also feel a longing for my kids to remember that it was terrible. I’d like them to high five me over what a disaster we all agree it was, and stick to things with less hype and closer to what we know we like for sure. Not that I don’t want us to be adventurous, but I’d rather know the truth, and let it be as honest in our recollections as can be. How about we not make mistakes a second time, as a result of choosing to paint history with glitter that doesn’t belong there?
I say “let be honest…as can be” because I think there’s no possible way NOT to taint our own memories through time.
But anyway, I wanted – I so wanted – to be honest and present and real in the space here; to say things like “Disneyland sucked!” And I tried really hard to do that. But as I discussed with my dear friend Amy over this hiatus from writing, I think it’s only possible for me to write for me with real truthfulness, or to write so that I create entries that a populous wants to read – one primary focus, or the other. I can put myself from my heart into the best language I’ve got at my typing fingertips, or I can make my focus of writing that I need to get readers for monetizing. I think these are not in ANY way mutually exclusive; many people write honest words that others love to devour. But if the expectation is readership over honesty, I can’t sustain it. My former friend Brooke told me so many times, “you just have to write what people want to read – the truth doesn’t matter, you just need readership numbers”. And that is borne out in all that I have read from her. But I can’t keep that up, and it doesn’t heal me to paint pretty watercolors on harsh memories.
Case in point, is this little side note: working through that relationship dissolution with Brooke has been long and difficult. I have almost nothing of value left to say about her after my experience with her pathology. I’ve never really said that about anyone before. I don’t want to talk about her now, but I probably will in the near future. Truthful space to do that here is what I need, and what I’m claiming. Truthful space to just speak, rather than trying to be inviting or inspiring. Authentic space that holds this truth over all – I write to express myself, not for the sake of someone else; and I am enough. Whether I’m bitter, speaking angrily, talking happily, or just pontificating on great TV – I am enough. I think that painting stories with bright colors for the sake of making them enticing to the ears of others is good campfire and Oscar movie storytelling – but it’s not good journaling, it’s terrible history, and too often causes pain and squelches growth. To write in this space like that, I would be accepting that I, and the stories that shape me, are not enough as they are.
I have been happy, I have grown, and I am OK. Also, I have been bitter. I have been so so hurt and betrayed. I’m still going through grief at almost four years out from Heather’s death, and it’s new and fresh and awful – even at four years old. So I’ve come back to this space to place it all here in the order it comes out. Like a pensive with the beautiful touch of Dumbledore’s wand. As it comes out, it comes out.
So here I am again. I wonder how it’ll go this time.