Last night I wrote to a friend: Writing this memoir makes me feel as if I’m a puzzle and I am putting all the pieces together. And some of the pieces are missing.
She said that it would be a hard thing to take myself a part, study myself and put myself back together. That she wouldn’t be able to do it but knew I had the strength to continue.
I wrote a good chunk of the memoir last night and found myself trying to detach from what I was writing. I was figuring out dates and times, trying to get things into chronological order.
Was I really that young when this happened? Was I not older than that? Where does this memory fit? Why can’t I remember what I said? Who is this talking now? Who’s voice is that? Why do I remember a rough wool blanket? When was my brother born? What did my father look like (as if I could forget)?
It feels like my brain is whispering when I write about myself, when I try to put myself down on paper. My fingers sped over the keyboard, memories taking new shape, getting new life in words.
I feel as if I am wading through a large swamp thick with muddy water. And I have not even made it half way through the soupy water. I can hear animals in the bushes, chattering at me.
And still I trudge on forward.
I asked Robert, my husband, if he would read what I wrote, if he would read what I’ve written so far. I knew before he answered that he would say no, that he would say: I want to read it when it’s finished.
How can I tell him that I want him to read the fragments, the puzzle pieces? That I want him to read as I go along, to come with me on this journey a bit at a time?
That the puzzle pieces are what will make up the whole and that maybe he can help me put the puzzle together? That it would mean so much to me if he read these words, because they are me on the printed page with nothing to hide behind.
A bared heart that beats for him.
But perhaps I’m meant to put the puzzle together myself, alone?
The very thought of that is frightening.