For some reason this week has been a challenge with everything. I hope this isn’t indicative of the year ahead! I mean, obviously I expect running 13.1 miles is not going to be an easy task – that’s why it’s my goal for the year. But, good heavens, everything that was easy doesn’t suddenly need to be treacherous! I could barely do a downward dog tonight without being lopsided. Yet somehow I still felt absolutely refreshed and still after yoga.
I was due to run 3-miles today also, but I decided to push it off until tomorrow (a rest day) because I didn’t get to sleep until 4:30 last night. Big no-no on my part. Soon I won’t be having this problem because I’ll be forced back into a schedule when school starts, but when I have no structure in my life I turn into a night owl. I’m convinced that my circadian rhythm is not 24 hours, because every time I have a long break I stay up at least an hour or two later than the night before and sleep at least an hour or two later than the morning before. If I’m not careful I’ll be staying up until dawn and waking up in the afternoon. Although I do think I have a fairly good excuse for staying up last night…I was reading a book. It’s not often (or ever, really) that I do that, but I was at the end of Susan Jane Gilman’s Undress Me In the Temple of Heaven and could not put it down! It’s an excellent memoir about the author traveling to The People’s Republic of China in 1986, before it became “developed”. Book 1 of 20 down for the year!
Ever since reading Eat, Pray, Love a few years ago, I’ve been into memoirs. I feel that memoirs, in a way, validate our existence. It reminds me that everyone has a story to tell, and an incredible one at that. I feel that sometimes we get so caught up in the monotony of our lives that we forget our experiences are individual and interesting, not just the experiences of those people who sit down and choose to write about it. Yeah, that’s right, I’m talking about you. YOU have something important to say. If we challenge ourselves to dig down, each and every one of us could find something to write about. A memoir isn’t about telling a good story (although they almost always end up doing so simply because of the fact that they’re good stories), but about teaching lessons and finding ways to relate to others in this world through the human experience.
Still not convinced that everyone has a story? A few months back I stumbled upon a project called StoryCorps. What you will find on this web page is truly amazing – a collection of audio clips of “every day people” telling their stories. These are people just like you and me. They’re teachers, bus drivers, doctors, the homeless, the person sitting in the cubicle next to you. Men, women, children, the elderly. They’re mothers and daughters, fathers and sons. And they all have a story to share. Some made me laugh. Some made me cry my eyes out. Some rendered me speechless. And each one is just as valid as the next.
So my question to you tonight is this: If you were to write a memoir or share a story with StoryCorps, what story would you tell?
I have plans to write a memoir someday about my journey away from and back to Catholicism (perhaps an entry about that in the future). I was thinking of calling it Mysterious Ways but now I wonder if There and Back Again: A Catholic’s Tale would be more appropriate. HAHA (Points to you if you catch that reference) But, in all seriousness, leave some comments with your stories. I want to hear them!