"You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should've behaved better." Anne Lamott
My life has been a little crazy so far. I recently figured out that I've moved an average of every 1.7 years in the past 34 and have called at least 4 different U.S. states and 1 foreign country home. This is nothing compared to many of my friends, but I'm only counting the places that I've actually stayed long enough to get mail. Going around the block a few times I've gathered more than a few stories. Some of them are pretty hilarious and some aren't so pretty, but all of them are mine. They come from my experience.
This is why I LOVE this Anne Lamott quote. Whenever I worry that I'm going to offend someone with my writing, I read this quote again. As with all things, I want to take the long view and try to think about how I will look back on my experiences in the end. I want to live without regret. I want to have the courage to write the words that are on my heart and not worry about how they are going to make anyone else feel. I don't want to shy away from controversy or typing up a tale just because it displays the bad behavior of someone I know.
So when I write about my advisor being a curmudgeon and questioning why in the world I would get pregnant a second time during my PhD, I know that this doesn't paint him in a rosy light. But it is the truth! He really did behave that way. It hurt my feelings at the time, but now of course I laugh about it.
Someday when I get up the gumption to write about my first stepdad and the torture he put our family through, I won't put it out there in black and white. I will put all the colors out there for the world to see, and I might not even change his name (though I worry about slander a little bit).
When I write about my kids in all their hilarity, I can only hope that they forgive me for being so forthcoming. I hope they just roll their eyes and maybe even guffaw at me for my audacity. I'll take that over some pat smile and nod for my efforts.
So thanks Pinterest for reminding me just how amazing Anne Lamott is, and for keeping her inspiring words ingrained in my consciousness. This is me...ok, so it is a couple months old, but I like the sentiment of this picture. My mascara is smudged and you can almost make out the circles under my eyes. This is me all dressed up and being silly. I took this picture just after my LTYM debut (that you can see on YouTube now btw). So behave around me, because I WILL tell this story too!