I am an entire book.
There are some pages I wish I could tear out. There are others I flip to readily. Those are the ones where I’m happy, smiling, feel and look exactly how you expect me to feel and look.
You don’t want to know my sadness. My pain. My hurt. The symphonies I’ve composed from falling tears. You would rather not see it because it reminds you of those pages in your own book. We always want to skip to the good parts.
And yet, maybe if I’m being honest with myself, I wish somebody would ask. Or admit their big charade. Even call me out, because then I couldn’t hide it anymore. And maybe I could breathe without all those heavy pages of hurt pain and solitude on my chest. Don’t you hurt too? Is it just me?
The conversation is one that happens in the four minutes I allow myself for a shower. Life must go on and my blank pages must be written. Filled with beautiful updates of the fairy tale we all long to read and realize. I couldn’t dare spoil it with my truth. I’ve convinced myself we all want the happy ending not the messy middle. So I won’t bother to reveal it. Flipping quickly past those pages during story time, don’t worry–I promise–I’m just getting to the good part…
And somewhere deep inside of me, a voice reminds me that my process is the good part. That my whole story is worth telling. That I was born with a gift to tell it beautifully, despite my personal tragedies. My resilience would go unnoticed if not for mention of my struggles. My polished shine would seem contrived if not for tales of my times of pressure and darkness. My smile too hollow my voice too shrill, the whole of me too light to be held down. My story gives me weight and dimension and vibrancy. My story, my whole story, brings me to life.
I can lie to Facebook. Everybody does. I can lie to Instagram and tumblr and pretend to have a Pinterest perfect life. But I cannot lie to those I love. Not because I can’t but because I do not want to. Because they know my story and have cherished the beautiful tale so much so that they can’t wait to see what happens next. Those are the readers that matter. And I as the author and heroine have the opportunity to, at any point, say this is not how my story is going to end! I can introduce a new character, I can change the setting. It is mine, before it is anyone else’s.
And when it is finished, many chapters from now, it will be a masterpiece. For I am an extraordinary being, worthy of a long honest read.
I am an entire book. Do not skip my pages.