She was at a crossroads in her life. She had watched helplessly as her mother suffered through an unfairly long, drawn-out death, a death surrounded by family betrayals and its ultimate demise. Followed by more loss and betrayals. She wrestled with understanding, numbness, lack of sleep, flashbacks and the ridiculously unfounded guilt she had about not doing enough that was tightly packaged inside her body. Stewing. Fermenting. From time to time slowly oozing from her pores, leaving fractures in its wake. She knew she had to find a way out. Unleash this burden, or it would turn on her.
She didn’t want to do it. It. This. Thing. The Challenge. During the fifteen year relationship she has had with her mentor, she heard it many times. Too many times. Write. Put it to words. You don’t have to do anything with the writing. Just write. Write. It sounded so simple and simultaneously, so horrifyingly hard. Boring even. She’d kept journals in the past, but had always found them so, well, mundane. So she ignored him and she ignored it, and she ignored it. Until she could ignore no more. She had to open the floodgates. Unleash.
No, she didn’t want to do it. But she had avoided and resisted and ignored long enough. It took her several days to find a blog that would fit her most basic needs. After all, she knew, just knew, that she couldn’t, wouldn’t write for thirty-one days in a row. Impossible. Not happening. Nothing she could possibly say would interest herself let alone anyone else. No use in paying for a blog, or having one with bells and whistles. It took her another day to find a title that fit where she was and another to find the right image, an image that didn’t need an explanation. .. Exhausted, it took a full week to set up the blog, and the game hadn’t yet begun.
Early on, she realized that this thing, this writing thing, held potential. She knew she didn’t want it to become a journal, a diary of her life, a kitchen sink list of her days. She threw herself into it, determined to make every piece count. Have meaning. Be alive. Unleash…
The first pieces she wrote seemed endless, even though they were short. She was spent. Wondered how she would keep the pace. But she found a zen and wrote and wrote and wrote, able to open the gate just a little so that some floodwaters were released, without breaking the dam. Unleash.
And then, it happened…
She kept at it. More determined than ever. She made a commitment , made up her mind, and she had no intention of not following through to the end. She was strong-like-bull that way.
More writing followed. Sometimes it was hours behind the keyboard, waiting for the topic to bubble to the surface. Each day, a new surprise as she learned that she didn’t know what she had to say, that she had something to say, until she went back and read it. It. Read her. Read herself unleashing.
Another revelation ensued. She understood that the writing she most connected to, the writing she found most provocative, the writing she wanted and desperately needed to do, was going to hurt. That writing would be filled with tears. Her tears. The readers’ tears. Tears all running together as writer and reader came together as one. Unleashed.
She knew it would be risky. She knew it would be unpopular. She was already close friends with the route: The Road Less Traveled…
But she explored the road less traveled anyway, and along it, she…
…unleashed and unleASHED and UNLEASHED.
She. finally. Unleashed.
And she was better for having done it, for having written, for having cried a river, for having conquered…
Thanks for a great run!
Merci à tous et toutes et à très bientôt !
©Maribeth Batcho All Rights Reserved