Monday, November 2, 2009
Writing stories - simple enough huh? Well hang on a sec - this is not quite what you might be thinking. I have been pondering the many variables, possibilities, purposes and so forth of story writing. I am speaking of the chapters we write that end up being part of someone else's story! Everyone we know, or with whom we have a chance encounter - we are part of their story. In blog-land -we are part of each others story. I refer back to that Grey's Anatomy episode: There was an abused mother caught in the cycle of abuse - so much so that heR seven year old daughter took matters in to her own hands and shot her abusive father 17 times. One of the doctors spoke sternly to the mother, telling her that she had to "Change her daughter's story". That line penetrated me deeply. I realized how children look to the adults in their lives to "write their stories" until they are of age to write their own. Each of us is part of the story for any and all children in our lives. My step-son is coming for a week with our little grand-daughter for a week. My first selfish thought was, "oh no, what will I do with them for a whole week - Skipp works long hours and it will be me and them?????" I stayed in that selfish mind set for a quick minute - and I asked myself - "How do I want this chapter to read that I will be writing and will forever be a part of the story of her life?" I am collecting 'kid movies' from friends and we are going to plan a 'pre-Christmas' just for her so she can open gifts under our tree. I am planning fun kid meals and time for crafts - we are going to make our own play-dough!! I think you get my drift. What do the chapters or pages look like that were written by you and will be written by you for the children whose lives you have touched and will continue to touch or have yet to touch?
As adults we have choices, for the most part, of who we allow to be part of the 'writing of our story', friends, and life's partners. Sometimes, even when the chapters they add or edit are painful and disrespectful we allow them to continue writing. I have let many "hold the pen" long after they deserved the honor. Then there are those kind of forced upon us, teachers, clergy, bosses, co-workers, neighbors, some family members all holding a pen and writing like it is theirs to complete. Those are the "lessons" I imagine we learn that make us stronger. All part of "our story".
Sometimes we eliminate story writers. Divorce, ending a friendship, or sometimes we avoid someone so whomever cannot get their pen any where near our 'story' so to add a line or a chapter or more. And sometimes the 'end' is good as it makes room for a new beginning - some times the missing pages that person would have written are really best left unwritten.
I am very much invested in this "story writing" responsibility. I ask myself all the time, before I act, if I feel good about my signature being on the lines, pages and chapters of someone else's story. I realize the "Butterfly Effect" more intently that I ever have. That what happens to one of us directly happens to all of us indirectly and that I am 100% responsible for the effect I create in being privileged to have a page in someone else's story.
Sadly, there are those who intend a harmful effect - thank God I have no reference for such personal intent. And those people are the ones, once recognized, that are not allowed to have a pen anywhere near my story. Some slip through anyway - and it is another lesson learned.
So may I ask of you today that you think about all the people in your lives, especially children, for whom you hold a pen and are able to write lines, pages and chapters of their story. Your pen is very powerful. And to look at the people in your life that hold a pen and perhaps it is an honor they do not deserve. Take their pen away. :-) And the others, that deserve the pen, - hold on to them for dear life and encourage their next chapter. :-)
Posted by Gail at 10:59 AM