Blog #12 Writing the Story of Our Lives

Posted on : 03-04-2010 | By : Lynn | In : Uncategorized

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Finally finished the book “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years” by Donald Miller and I’ve got to say that I feel inspired to pay attention to the story that I’m writing about my life. Not just for the story’s sake but because right now, this moment is all that I am capable of being totally aware of at one time (that I know of) so why not really become as conscious as I can about the story that I’m weaving?

I remember when I was ten years old and my parents were on the cusp of divorcing, my brother and I used to go sit outside on the curb and talk. That may have been the first time that I can recall catching myself disassociating from my body because I would “come to” as my brother was speaking and have to tell myself, “okay there is the the oak tree and the trunk is brown and the grass on our lawn is green, etc. etc., etc.” so that I could be present in the moment no matter how painful it was. I spent a good part of therapy learning how not to disassociate from reality and how to instead stay in reality and forge ahead.

Flash forward several decades and now I’m paying attention to so many things going on in my life and around me. It still amazes me to watch a beautiful sunset and know that, that sunset is a one and only original that will never come again quite like this one. Yesterday afternoon my husband called me to the back door to look at the Cedar Waxwings busily grabbing china berries off of our deck. There was a whole flock of them (Cedar WW tend to be gregarious and social and enjoy hanging out in big groups) padding around with their feet and grabbing at berries with their beaks as their crests moved in various forms of communication. Later on when I moved outside to study, they had flown up into the tree and were picking the berries off letting the extras hit the deck below. It struck me as funny and I’m not sure why except that it must have been that peculiar bird-humor thing that I’ve experienced now and then with our feathered friends. These are the kind of stories that I enjoy showing up for today.

So you see, there are many ways that we can write the stories of our lives and all kinds of chapters and characters that we can and will introduce depending on what we choose to do. I’m wondering if really the most important ingredient that we can add to our stories is that of passion and immersion. That if, for you, writing your story is rafting down the Grand Canyon then be in that raft and smell the fresh air and water and feel the spray against your skin. Really be in that raft. If on the other hand, writing your story is sitting on your back porch looking at a lady bug finding her way along a blade of grass then really pay attention to that lady bug and notice the color of the blade of grass and the shininess of the lady bugs wings.

Become your own story even as you’re in the midst of writing it. I’m still working this out in my own mind and heart but I think I’m on to something here. I think I’m on to living and enjoying life while I’m in this Earth suit….all I have to say to God is “bring it on my man, bring it on”…

Comments (2)

I have several vivid memories of “coming to” when I was a child. For me they are brief flashes of self-awareness: one moment I am playing basketball in the street on a warm summer night, not thinking about anything but the game, and the next moment it’s almost as if I am standing outside myself, watching and criticizing. Scary moments, usually. But I think of them now as key steps on the path toward my becoming a sentient human being.

Lately it occurred to me that if I had never experienced those moments of waking up, then I could have spent the rest of my life just living in the moment. Of course, I would probably be the mental equivalent of a six-year old. But on the other hand, I wouldn’t be so acutely aware of my own failures and shortcomings, or how stupid I look whenever I get anywhere near a dance floor.

It’s hard to be both self-aware and in the moment. It’s hard to get excited like a six-year old when 46 years of memories are crowding you from behind, and you’re standing in the shadow of tomorrow’s responsibilities. But that’s what coaches are for 🙂

“The most important ingredient that we can add to our stories is that of passion and immersion.” I like that. Thank you for the reminder.

Rick! We definitely want to hear more from you my friend! Thanks for piping in here. Always enjoy your mind!

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