It turns out that writing the book isn’t as simple as sitting down and telling the story. So far its been a painful process having to relive and re-feel all the feelings again. I’m plagued by self doubt and sadness. Am I a good enough writer? Will it be shit? Have I wasted the last twenty years fantasising about writing a book when actually all along its a total pile of turd and a non story? Then there’s the whole is it a memoir or is it an autobiography struggle and then I give myself a talking to and tell myself to just write it all fucking down and worry about the rest later. This is a cycle that repeats itself many times a day at the moment.
The sadness comes in waves. I’ve been trying to rough up a plan for the book, to try and structure it so I have something to work alongside and as I’ve gone through the exercise of plotting the key events its made me feel sad. That’s the only word I can use to describe it, sad. Sad that I’m summing my life up in these half a dozen desperate situations. We were three children being aimlessly and sometimes recklessly, pulled along by two very lost parents. I feel sad that my parents aren’t in my life anymore and that as a family we are splintered and scattered across the country. I miss the time before it all went to shit, when my parents stopped being Mum and Dad and turned into “Pain Inflictor A” and “Pain Inflictor B”.I haven’t seen my father for fifteen years. My mother and I haven’t had a proper speaking relationship for about five years and it was “strained” at best for a long time before that. I’ve not seen or heard from my youngest brother in about 7 years. At times I have felt like an orphan. I miss the dad I had when I was 11, the dad who snuck me out to the shop to get my ears pierced for my birthday in secret. I miss the Mum who made awesome picnics, would have given Mary Berry a run for her money in the baking department and took us places where we could stuff our faces and build dens in the woods and bushes. I miss the little brother who I locked in my Mum’s wardrobe when I was 7 and who didn’t grass me up when it fell on top of him and smashed the mirror inside.
I worry that I shouldn’t have started the blog. That its too honest. I feel exposed and vulnerable. Its like I ripped a scab off without thinking it through and don’t quite know how to deal with the wound that’s underneath. I have concerns about how I’m coming across but I’m not paying too much attention to that feeling because I know its tied up with my low self esteem. Finally, I worry about the damage I could cause and the hurt. I don’t want to hurt my parents or my brothers. On the one hand I think that it’s my story and I have every right to tell it but on the other hand I don’t want to cause anyone anymore pain.
This is probably a very natural part of the process and my instinct tells me I should probably just go with the flow, feel the feelings and get the fucking thing written. I don’t have to publish it if I don’t want. I’ve asked myself why I’m writing it and I think there are two reasons. Firstly I think it’s a story worth telling. Who doesn’t have a story worth telling? Mostly though, I want it to reach people who have been abandoned or abused and tell them it wasnt their fault, they are worthy of being loved and that there is nothing wrong with them.
Maybe I just need to put my big girl pants on a be brave. I know I’ve done brave before but I’m out of practice. Or maybe I’m making a big mistake. What do they say, you only regret the things you don’t do? We’ll see.