Too often, I write with frustration and angst of not being able to do something. Either I can’t write an outline, function as a “normal” person, protect my ultra sensitive self from the world or in the case of today, I’m struggling with my writing voice.
It isn’t frustration that I feel today, its more raw. The tenderness that precedes healing. There’s a hint of cohesion and acceptance. I continue to look at the work that I’m doing with Warner Coaching and my first instinct is to beat my head against the same wall that I’ve beaten a rut into my entire life. I don’t want to do that now and I’m sure she doesn’t want me to either.
Here’s my question that I’m pondering and hopefully, re-outlining and writing upon. How do we access and write about memories so cellular that you experienced as a small pre-verbal child? They are there but yet they aren’t. How do we assign words and streams of sentences to an experience at a time when the child didn’t have words? There are fragments. Shattered, shards of splintering pictures that I, as an adult, must name and tell. The abused, disassociated child must come together enough to write her story. The process of sweeping those fragments out from under the rug, identifying and cataloging them is proving to be tougher than I ever imagined.
I’m painstakingly applying glue to delicate, tiny pieces of psyche. I keep telling myself not to rush it for I want to slap the glue on and hold up my prize proclaiming it as my finished art. But the glue isn’t dry yet and all the pieces aren’t in place.
My Novel Writing Winter may have evolved into more of a journey into my core viscera. “Remembering is not something we do alone….. negotiating an account of the past is a fraught, dangerous process. Memories can be weapons as well as instruments of persuasion. And memory has only a part-time interest in the truth. It deals in scenarios, real ones and imagined ones, making and remaking the self from the partial, damaged information available” from Creative Memories in Harold Pinter’s Old Times by Charles Fernyhough.
So its acceptance that I must practice. Radical acceptance. My story will happen and in its own time. I’m stretching myself in an unchartered direction. I’m learning and rebuilding from the ground floor up, setting a pace for myself that I’ve never reached for before. Marsha Linehan, DBT creator, defines radical acceptance, “As a practice, acceptance is highly important in working with impulsive, highly sensitive, and reactive clients. Validation is an active acknowledgement, often offered as an antithesis or synthesis to a distorted expectation or belief. It jumps the tracks of demand, soothing or defusing the emotional arousal associated with failure, feat, shame, unreasonably blocked goals, or a variety of other stimuli.”
I reach for the loving support of my family, friends, writing coach and virtual writing pals. These gifts combined with prayer will suffice for the day. Soon I will know what to do and how to proceed.