Memories make memoir and create inner freedom
Memories can be healing, revealing, scary, upsetting, fun and a whole lot of emotions in-between. Every experience creates a memory in the library of your soul. When you come to write a memoir and walk into that vast room, you may not know where or how to start. Personally, I think that when you start the journey into memoir the most important thing is that you allow. What I mean by that is you allow yourself to wander through the library and enjoy the process of connecting your memories with new eyes. Also allowing whatever needs to arise in the moment.
Often I am confronted with something that triggers a memory, it seems at first disconnected to the memoir, personal story, book or blog that I am writing. And then just like that, it starts to make sense. In that sense making process, I believe that we can create a sense of freedom.
Everything starts from within. Our beliefs about something seem so deeply ingrained, yet when we explore with new eyes and open our hearts to the message that lies beneath we start to liberate ourselves from self-imposed tyranny.
Now I am not saying you will be jumping for joy when you are reminded of events. You may be happy and equally, you may cry. The important thing is that you allow, acknowledge, accept and then take some small action.
Let me give you an example.
Last night I went to a party, nothing unusual in that, it was New Year’s Eve and a time when people like to get together and see in the New Year. Of course, some don’t, preferring the peace of a roaring fire and perhaps dinner and a film.
The music played, people danced, and the DJ opened her deck so that anyone could request a personal song. There were some songs that I wanted to lose myself in, taking me back to a time when I too would have been on the floor dancing all night.
Two years ago I sustained an injury and stuff like dancing hurts and so to protect myself I don’t. But then a very curious thing happened.
Sam The Sham & The Pharaohs and Woolly Bully came on. And that was it.
Suddenly I was transported back in time to my parent’s parties. I wanted to dance. I asked a friend who wrinkled her nose at my suggestion, and then I was surprised by another friend who I’d thought wasn’t into dancing coming on to the empty dance floor with me. It was wonderful. I wasn’t at this party, I was back as a child twisting and laughing to the music.
When we sat down I told him the story of mum and dad’s parties and how this song made me feel. The conversation meandered into how I’d loved to dance and enjoyed the parties on the RAF camp where we lived. I explained how when the guys I’d danced with discovered who my dad was they freaked. I’d never really understood why. Dad was as far as we knew ‘just’ a fireman.
My tale veered off to a discovery I made last year. I had posted a picture of dad on Facebook. Someone privately messaged me about my dad being a rock ape. Firstly I had no idea what a rock ape was and secondly, I (or mum) hadn’t known he was in the RAF Regiment. When mum and I first discovered this we pondered about how little we had known about my dad. Who was this mysterious man who scared my potential suitors away and who might not have been just a fireman?
This morning when out walking this all came flooding back, only now there were other connections popping up.
So let me explain.
Today I start to edit my book Rude Awakenings. It opens with my first awakening – discovering that my then husband was and had been for all of our relationship living a double life. How little I knew about who he really was.
The song last night triggered off thoughts of my childhood and the discovery that potentially my dad was not who he seemed either. My ex-husband was not who he seemed and in my journey which I share in my book, I was looking for the ‘real’ me.
I am reminded that when I edit I must look beneath the stories and memories that make this memoir and to let whatever arises. It seems to me as we enter a new year and full moon, that this is another call from my soul to release more.
You may think you are just writing a memoir, but in effect as you work on your book you are creating a pathway to inner freedom.
For you to ponder…
What is the core message of your memoir?
We always come back to the core message. A memoir is not just a story, there is a learning point or points in every chapter, which comes back to the core message.
In Rude Awakenings I am on a journey to self-love and self-discovery, this is my books core message. However, as a writing coach, the bigger message for me is to inspire you to have the courage to write your book.
What do you still need to let go of?
When you think about your core message as you write and edit, what else can you learn about you? Are there any fragments that you still need to let go of?
No matter how you feel about your story right now, there will always be something that pops up to remind you to take note. What are those things? Your reader will probably experience stirrings of emotions as they read – what might they be? Our experiences may be similar but how we process them is often different and we each need to find our way. Just take a moment to consider how your reader will feel as they read your book?
Which way does freedom lie?
Writing has always been my saviour. When we step beyond the thinking mind and allow whatever needs to arise come forth then I believe we can find freedom.
Freedom comes from inside. When we allow ourselves to write without limitations, we are telling our souls that its ok for it all to be laid bare. In becoming a witness we can learn so much about who we are.
I say write for freedom and edit for your reader. What I mean is write the memories, flow through and with them. Take the time to explore and adventure with what comes up. When you come to edit, you will know what is for you and what is for your reader.
My invitation today is to ask you to reflect on yesterday. What conversations did you have, where do those thoughts take you? Use the full moon to let go of limitations around writing your memoir.
It’s a new year, a new chapter, and if you could give yourself the freedom to write your memoir, what would it be called?
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