Dear Beautiful Woman,
We adore stories. It’s in our nature. Often, we resonate with the stories others tell because they bring us closer to our own. When we sit down to record the events of our lives, we usually make some unexpected personal discovery. In fact, author Joan Didion says, “I don’t know what I think until I write it down.” Story brings us close to the ambiguous twists, turns and “ah ha” moments of life.
Today’s blog features a story from a women in my Character Safari writing workshop whose voice exudes authenticity and grace. Rosanne’s story touches me on many levels and I have a sense that you’ll feel the same.
Rosanne W. Carlson
There was a time when I was feeling very unloved and unhappy in my life. I found myself considering the possibility of leaving my marriage. My husband and I had been having difficulties for a number of years, and it had recently come to a head. I am not sharing this to assign blame or display anger, as many of us have been in similar circumstances. It happens, and each one of us has a choice to make as to how we handle it. At that time, I wanted my marriage to last, and yet, I felt helpless to do anything about it.
We had a large circle of friends, and one person in particular was kind enough to listen to my tale of unhappiness. I found that I was attracted to this person, probably because he was simply nice enough to listen. We had a completely platonic friendship, but I must admit, that I did feel a certain amount of admiration and attraction for him. But, he was an honorable person, and would never have taken advantage of my vulnerable state. He was wise enough to know that becoming involved would only lead to more heartache.
As his birthday approached I found myself wanting to give him a birthday present. But, what would be an appropriate gift for a platonic friendship? I knew that he liked to write, so when I stumbled upon a stationary boutique one day, I went in to have a look around. Hmm, what would a writer need? Monogramed stationary? A seal with his initial on it? And then I saw it…a pen. I was drawn to a simple sleek pen with a soft gel grip. It was advertised as the pen developed for use by astronauts so they could write upside down while in space. How cool was that? This was it. Simple, smooth, functional, yet it had an elegance about it. It was a bit pricey too, but I wanted the best for this person.
But, as his birthday approached, I began to have second thoughts about giving him the pen. I guess I felt that it might be construed as an offer of more than just friendship. I decided it would be inappropriate for me to give it to him, so back into the box it went. And, that’s where it has stayed for the last twenty years. Every once in a while I would take it out to admire its sleek style. And, eventually I began to consider writing my own stories. This was to be an event of God’s Divine Timing. For I would not be writing these words today unless I learned the lessons of the previous twenty years.
All those many years ago, I believe that on some level I was hoping he or someone else would rescue me from my unhappiness, the proverbial ‘knight in shining amour.’ But now I know that this was just a diversion, an escape played out in my shattered heart to make myself feel better for a little while. I had to learn to rescue myself, which I did.
And so, on this day, February 14, 2016, the pen has been freed from its box, and I will begin writing the story of my life. This pen feels so good in my hand, and my words flow freely, for you see, the pen was always meant for me, not for anyone else. God, in His infinite wisdom, knew this all along.
God has taught me a precious lesson with the help of this pen. You must be willing to rescue yourself first, no one else can do that for you. If you are willing to take those first small steps forward, you will find all of the help you need along the way. You can write the story of your own life!
Rosanne’s pen is a physical symbol of the Divine support she feels in her life. Her path is embedded with experiences to unpack, wisdom to share. It takes courage to place one’s words and heart on paper for public view.
Rosanne’s story has the power to awaken our own stories. Which stories of your past would inspire others and increase your sense of self-understanding? You might not know until you begin to write. So write! I’d love to hear what you have to say and perhaps publish your writing in a future blog.
May your self-trust build confidence,