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Write Like Your Parents Are Dead or Alive, Just Write

I’ve been listening to a lot to talk of telling your story. When we write and tell our stories, we own them. Our stories become grounding and good for our souls. But the Stories We Live are tricky to tell when they involve other people and you wonder, what are the rules there? 

The primary question I heard, and have asked myself, is what impact will this story have on the other people in my story and in my life ? And here are the answers I’ve heard. If you need to tell your story, tell it. Don’t worry if anyone will read it because you might not show it to anyone afterwards. But the story needs to come out of you. It’ll fester until it does.

You also need to never share a story that you haven’t resolved. Stories that are still being written, need to stay private. The story won’t serve you or your audience if you are asking them to help you heal it thanks to Brene Brown for that insight). And on the same note, we may also need to heal our life’s relationships with the people in our lives for it to be worth telling. Healing is interesting.

I always loved the quote from Anne Lamott,”Write like your parents are dead.”

And then she added, this,“Remember that you own what happened to you. If your childhood was less than ideal, you may have been raised thinking that if you told the truth about what really went on in your family, a long bony white finger would emerge from a cloud and point to you, while a chilling voice thundered, “We *told* you not to tell.” But that was then. Just put down on paper everything you can remember now about your parents and siblings and relatives and neighbors, and we will deal with libel later on.”Write Like Your Parents Are Dead or Alive, Just Write on Shalavee.com

Unresolved anger and resentment aren’t very interesting. You can change people’s names but they’ll still know who they are. Or maybe you need truly no longer care about that person if you commit to telling about them. The bottom line is that you still have to get it out of you. So this will be a matter of editing not of writing.

I found that the stories I had to tell about my sad sack childhood made me sorry for myself but didn’t empower me in any way. I was passing the blame back when I needed to no longer be defined by it at all. Everyone is doing their best at any given time. And as a writer, the best story I have to tell is the truthiest story I have in me.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Oh Universe, What Would You Have Me Do?

We mistrust ourselves so much, we have to hand much of our decision making over to another power. We create elaborate ways to make decisions. Drop a divining line down and see which way it swings to decide (dowsing pendulum). Pick your arm up and drop it to see if you should eat it (applied kinesiology). Because it’s awfully hard admitting that you have no faith in your own decisions and easier to give it over to something else. The exception being God. But most of us are faithless and frenetic.

The Drowning man story is the best story ever which humorlessly depicts how our lack of sight and faith keeps us from seeing the divine signs sent to us.

A fellow was stuck on his rooftop in a flood. He was praying to God for help.

Soon a man in a rowboat came by and the fellow shouted to the man on the roof, “Jump in, I can save you.”

The stranded fellow shouted back, “No, it’s OK, I’m praying to God and he is going to save me.”

So the rowboat went on.

Then a motorboat came by. “The fellow in the motorboat shouted, “Jump in, I can save you.”

To this the stranded man said, “No thanks, I’m praying to God and he is going to save me. I have faith.”

So the motorboat went on.

Then a helicopter came by and the pilot shouted down, “Grab this rope and I will lift you to safety.”

To this the stranded man again replied, “No thanks, I’m praying to God and he is going to save me. I have faith.”

So the helicopter reluctantly flew away.

Soon the water rose above the rooftop and the man drowned. He went to Heaven. He finally got his chance to discuss this whole situation with God, at which point he exclaimed, “I had faith in you but you didn’t save me, you let me drown. I don’t understand why!”

To this God replied, “I sent you a rowboat and a motorboat and a helicopter, what more did you expect?”

We are given so much and yet our brains don’t see what we’ve got but rather focus on what we don’t have.

Meditation and yoga are ways to reach our larger calmer parental minds, the voices we could trust to make decisions for us. But these processes are not a “one time and done” kinda thing. They require discipline and time and pain. Modern Americans have no time for any of these. And in essence, were not really worth it.Oh Universe, What Would You Have Me Do?

The beautiful thing about being young is that you are told what to do. You resent every little syllable you had to obey but when you find yourself without the direction, you may end up asking the Universe what it may want of you? And it may be super hard to find that first answer. But that is where I am right now.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Taking off From the Runway

Seems recently, my brain has made enough room to allow for some actions in directions that I had “always meant” to go, but hadn’t gone yet. Begin the unstuck here.  I had purchased a series of talks on fear which have wallowed in my email box until suddenly recently, I dialed it up and listened. 

And then today, I was driving in the car and I remembered I had a link in my browser tabs to Elizabeth Gilbert’s Magic Lessons podcast. And I dialed that up and began to listen to the first episode of season one from 2015.

The Universe allows you to get what you need when you are ready.

Her very first podcast was with a blogger and Mom named Erin. She’d been writing her self-development and mothering blog for 6 years but she was feeling the push to do something bigger now that her youngest one was in first grade. But she was struggling with guilt and doubts. Sound familiar?

If there wasn’t a podcast meant for me to hear, it was this now.

She suggested that Erin had been on the “Runway” of the airport picking up steam for the takeoff the years that she’d been teaching and blogging. Hmmmm. And that now it was time for her to dive into writing her book before her plane crashed into the houses at the end of the runway.

She also had a few more brilliant ideas and permissions to give Erin who struggled with motherhood guilt. By engaging in the creativity that expresses who she is, she is modeling this for her children. She can love and be available for them because she’s there for herself first. And it would be good for everyone for the kids to be asked not to disturb her for a while. They need to learn how to occupy themselves as well as be modeled boundaries so they can have them too.Taking off From the Runway on Shalavee.com

She suggested that when she’s writing, there’ll be a time when Mom will only be able to be there 75% of the time and not a 100%. And that we often have these notions about Good Mommies and Bad Mommies and it seems like we can’t be both sometimes. If we slack, will be replaced? I doubt it. Will they appreciate us more? Probably. Why not then? I dunno.

In the 20 whatever minutes of Elizabeth Gilbert’s Magic Lessons Podcast, I’d heard more than I have ever heard as a writer that let me know I am right where I needed to be and that I too am ready to move myself along. And all the fear burbling up is disguised as perfectly good sounding excuses which not even the best writers can avoid feeling the fear. They’ve just seen it through to the other side and finished the book. So what is it that I am needing to get on to doing?

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Every Picture Tells a Story…

And an even better one when the picture is pretty.

I have always loved taking pictures. And after I birthed this blog from a need to practice my writing, I soon became aware that I needed to put my own pictures with my words. It made sense.

And just as my writing benefited from perpetual practice, so did my pictures. I discovered it wasn’t in the taking of the picture necessarily, although you do need to have something captured on your camera, but in the editing of the pictures.Every Picture Tells a Story... on Shalavee.com

At first, I used my picture program in my computer to pump up the contrast and colors for each picture. But when my old computer began to lock up with too many pictures, I started to use my phone camera and other photo editing apps to do all of my picture editing.

I’ve tried Snapseed and VSCO but in the end, I just use the phone edit program, Square InPic which puts any picture into a square format, and then the edit program attached to Instagram. That’s it.

I have a new computer as of a year ago and would love to get a better photo program to use, but for now, I can use my phone with all the pictures being backed up onto my phone via OneDrive.Every Picture Tells a Story... on Shalavee.com

Maybe one day I’ll get back to film, or even own a DSLR camera, but for now I am contented to just keep doing what I’m doing. The best camera is the one you have with you.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Wow, It’s My 8th Year Blogaversary

Hard to believe I’ve been writing this blog for 8 years. I didn’t really read blogs or know what they were in 2011. But there was this woman I was trying to befriend and she insisted that, as a writer, I needed to start one. My blog should have a theme and I would gain an audience, a readership. So I went ahead and set up my free WordPress blog in August of 2011.

I wanted to call it Chez La Vie, The Home of My Life in French. (Chez La is pronounced just like my name, Shalagh). But that domain was taken by a French restaurant in an English resort town. So I settled for Shalavee and away I excitedly went.

I don’t know that I can adequately describe all the changes that this choice has put me through. I was introduced to Social Media and all the ups and downs that that entails. I discovered I can make a community with people all over the world that I’ve never met. I found my voice, I found my art, and I found a good part of me. I’ve been trolled, I’ve sat in a lot of silence, and I’ve become a way better writer.

Wow, It's My 8th Year Blogaversary on Shalavee.com

I’ve also stayed very small. I’ve watched many other bloggers become bigger and bigger. I try not to compare my lack of progress to their progress but it’s there. But all of us have different journeys we have to make and take. Mine has been a round about way of finding my way back to me without stressing myself out with popularity and stats. Staying true to myself has always been a priority.

But I can tell you, that sooner than later, my blog will transform form the chrysalis into a butterfly. And I hope you are here to watch this happen.

Here’s to growing and blooming in the pots that we are planted in. And for joining with others to make our own gardens. I’ll keep writing my blog and I hope you’ll keep reading!

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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