Friday, March 9, 2012

Memoir Writing V: Writing The Hard Stuff

Welcome to day five of Memoir Week. Today, we take a bit more of a somber note because the topic is writing the hard stuff.

So, what is the hard stuff? It's the things you'd rather not admit to, the things you'd rather forget. Chances are, it's the reason you're writing your memoir in the first place.

When I took on the idea of my memoir, I couldn't handle it. I'd written a blog post in October, updated my fear journal, but I couldn't face what had happened or what I'd done. Dear God, I'd gotten pregnant. Worse yet? I wasn't 100% sure who the father had been. In order to write the memoir truthfully and factually, I'd have to admit these things to myself, and to you guys. I would also have to realize that some of the players involved, weren't completely evil...even if I hate them.

At the time I'd taken the test I was emotionally unstable. There are pictures of my hand three weeks later after I'd punched the crap out of a wall. It got to a point I couldn't handle being awake, breathing. I laid on the couch for days on end, refusing to answer my cell phone, refusing to go into work. Then...I did the unthinkable.

I almost abandoned this little man, but in
the end, he's a huge reason why I'm
still alive.
Suicide became a viable option.

I'd gone so far as to start arranging a permanent home for Baxter so when I was dead, he'd be taken care of. I made posts like THIS or THIS on this blog. I was ready to say goodbye. And then something shifted. Someone in my Alanon group told me, "I burned my bra so that you'd have a choice. Don't let suicide be your option." Then more and more people started telling me, hugging me as I was sobbing, "You deserve the right to live, you deserve the right to make your decision." And so with their support, I made my decision:

I went to a clinic, I cried for days, and then I chopped off my hair again, started wearing jeans more often, and in less than a month, Baxter and I moved to Maine. When we arrived, I fully started going by Lynne, my middle name, rather than my first name because that girl died at the clinic. Even now, as I'm in Michigan I cringe every time someone uses that name because I loathe who I'd been.

I went from being the girl who was waiting for marriage to have sex, to the girl who was pregnant.  I went from the girl who was against abortion and to the girl in the waiting room to get one. And now, I'm writing about it.

The wounds are still fresh, and I'm incredibly angry about all of it. On certain days, the self loathing comes back, and I want to drive my car into a tree. Most of the time as I'm writing The Right To Live I'm on the brink of falling apart. There's a commercial out there about abortion that says something like, "The woman who has an abortion only says fetus, or only thinks of it as tissue." It's not true.

He or she was my child I killed. He or she was a playmate for Baxter, a niece or nephew for my sisters. But, where I am at in my life, I am not ready for a child...emotionally, financially, physically, and so I made my decision. Was it selfish? Yes. Would I have killed myself if I'd chosen to carry it to term and given it up for adoption? Yes.

After a long time of not talking about it, I'm able to write now. I'm also breaking down every time I open my lap-top. I'm panicking as I write this post because I'm afraid to lose followers because of the decision I've made. The bottom line, is that this happened to me, this is who I was, and now I'm someone else. I will never be that girl again.

So, the message today is to write your story. Write until you break down, and then go for a walk, pet your dog, hug someone. Call someone for support. But write your story, because it's yours and it's beautiful, and you deserve to share it. Push through the hard stuff. You survived it once, you can do it again.

Thanks for reading today. I hope you guys don't hate me for sharing this with you...

Tomorrow's blog: Condensing And Memory Lapse


  1. You are not going to loose me, and I understand what it is like to write the hard stuff even though it kills you inside. I write certain things to get over it, and I break down at times because of the past. I stopped doing it once I freed myself from guilt, and I am better off now then when I tortured myself about the past.

  2. You are a very brave writer. That's something I really admire. I have a hard time completely real, even when I'm dealing with fictional characters and situations.

  3. Lynne, you will not lose a single friend that you want to keep. Hugs xxx

  4. To all three of you, thank you for your support. It means more than you can possibly imagine (and may have actually caused me to cry a little. Don' judge :) ). You guys are incredible.


Please know that if you comment and I don't respond, it's not because I don't love you. It's because I don't have wifi, but I do have a bad memory.

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