Tap, tap, tapping away on my keyboard, reading and rereading chapters, my eyes burn. I understand now why other writers have said that editing a story is sometimes harder than the initial writing. This has been the case with my memoir. Having never written a book I had zero expectations about the process other than to write my story, beginning to end. In the year it took to complete the task I learned a little about myself. I learned I needed specific deadlines and goals. I learned I had a recognizable style and voice. And I underestimated the impact revisiting my past would have on my heart.
The first draft was hard for sure. But to revisit those stories again in the revisions,Yuck! I’m not kidding when I say I seriously considered whether the finished product would be worth the harsh impact on my psyche. Doubt was quick to make an appearance, chipping away at my confidence. Hadn’t I left all that crap behind?
I reached a point in my editing today where it was too hard to go on. The sad stories were difficult to stomach. And the happy memories were not enough to keep me going. I feel a little ridiculous because I know how this story ends, and its’s all good. I come back strong, victorious in the game of life.
I suppose it’s human to get tearful about sad episodes in my life. I guess I thought a regular spiritual practice would free me of the sadness that came from old wounds. In reality, as enlightened and evolved as I strive to be, I am still a human being, with funky human thinking, human emotions and flaws.
It’s accepting the humanness in me that makes life so challenging I think. Growth and spiritual awaking began with the desire to break free of traits and patterns that kept me weak and fearful, preventing me from living my best life.
Reading my manuscript from beginning to end, again and again, I see the way my single minded attachment to people and ideas led to so much misery. I was always searching for something outside myself. It was during the failures and rough patches that I learned to surrender to faith. I had to let go of the false belief that I was master of the Universe and could control every single outcome. That work is way beyond my pay grade.
I take a deep breath and accept the fragility of my human self. I find immense strength from an inner voice that tells me that I am not nearly finished. I have important work to do on this planet and in this lifetime. My story reminds me, again and again, of how far I have come.
Back to editing . . . this book isn’t going to write itself. 🙂
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