Many years ago, while I was immersed in a relationship that was killing me, I didn’t write. It was one of the many signs I ignored on that road to hell that was telling me, “You are not safe here! Run for your life!”
Ignoring the signs of my ill-being was easier if I didn’t write. Not acknowledging how sick I was becoming was vital to keeping his anger and abuse at bay.
I didn’t want to face his anger. I also didn’t want to face myself on the page.
Writing for me is about truth. The truth is those days was that I was lost, abused, terrified. I didn’t believe I had value. I didn’t believe I deserved to live.
There was no grace in that place. There was no grace to write.
One of the graces of writing is its capacity to awaken me to the story beneath the story.
On the weekend, I created a writing corner just for me. It’s beside a window that overlooks the river’s edge. I can sit and watch the water flow, hear its voice, feel its essence, be one with nature.
There is something very symbolic about my writing space, something I hadn’t connected until I started writing about writing (and not writing) this morning.
On the morning of May 21, 2003 when I was released from the hell of that relationship, we were staying at a small bed and breakfast beside a river. It wasn’t as wide or fast moving or as deep as The Bow. It gurgled through the property, laughing in the sun as it raced to the sea.
Every morning I would stand by the river’s edge and imagine I could unhook gravity’s hold on my body so that by its own volition, it would fall into the water and be washed out to sea. In its disappearance, all memory of my having been here on earth would be erased from my daughters’ minds and they would be able to continue on with their lives, free of any memory of the mother who had loved them so, and then disappeared.
See, I couldn’t take my own life. That would have made a lie of the one truth I held onto — I love my daughters. Everything else in my life had become a lie. I could not violate that one truth.
But if I could unhook gravity…
I sit by the river this morning, writing.
I no longer want to unhook gravity’s hold.
I no longer live ‘the lie’.
I am blessed.