I Am Not the Stories I Tell

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Sometimes when people read my stories they assume those stories are me.  They are not me, even if I write in the first person.  They were my thoughts and feelings at the time I wrote them.  But every minute we are all changing.  There is a great freedom in this.  At any time we can let go of our old selves and start again.  This is the writing process.  Instead of blocking us, it gives us permission to move on.  Just like in a progressive ballroom dance:  you give your undivided attention to your partner—keep eye contact for the time you are dancing together—but then you move on to the next person in the circle.

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The ability to express yourself on the page—to write how you feel about an old lover, a favourite pair of dance shoes, or the memory of a dance on a chilly winter’s night in the Southern Highlands—that moment you can support how you feel inside with what you say on the page.  You experience a great freedom because you are not suppressing those feelings.  You have accepted them, aligned yourself with them.

 

I have a poem titled ‘This is what it feels like’—it’s a short poem.  I always think of it with gratitude  because I was able to write in a powerful way how it was to be desperate and frightened.  The act of self expression made me feel less of a victim.  But when people read it they often say nothing.   Creative Commons photoI remind myself, I am not the poem, I am not the stories I write.  People react from where they are in their own lives.  That’s the way things are.  The strength is in the act of writing, of putting pen to paper.   Write your stories and poems, show them to the world, then move on.  The stories are not you.  They are moments in time that pass through you.

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19 thoughts on “I Am Not the Stories I Tell

  1. I withold so much of what I would like to say because I ‘know’ how it will be received…ha ha. why go there? it stays within…simmering,brewing, steeping…until one day the petcock blows because it was never meant to be blown out

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    1. I live in Australia. we call the the outback ‘the bush’. bush dancing is old time dancing that includes English Country Dancing, Irish, Scottish, American Contra. it’s group dancing with a caller. you don’t need a dedicated partner. you just stand up and join a formation of six or eight people on the dance floor. suitable for all ages, all nationalities, all levels of fitness. good old-fashioned fun. ballroom and Argentine tango can be too serious (plus you need a dedicated partner). thanks for asking. do you dance?

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  2. I do not dance and you have shown me a glimpse of the ‘depth’ of dance. I did not know about the ‘constant eye contact’ in progressive ballroom dancing and assumed they were serious dancers or all madly in love. Now I get it!
    I LOVE your description of Bush Dancing! What fun!
    Am also enjoying your writing and will continue looking around. Thanx for visiting my blog recently. ren PS-is it as wonderful living in Australia, as I dream it to be?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. nice to hear from you, ren. i like your blog’s title page: BRANCHING OUT – experiencing life, one limb at a time. very clever, and so true.
      yes, we are very lucky those of us who live in Australia. beautiful country, fabulous climate, relaxed lifestyle.

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  3. Writing gives one. License to yell a true story but embellish it. We call it faction,half fact,half fiction. I like your style of writing. It flows nicely

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