Thursday, February 16, 2017

I Ain't Done Yet.

The manuscript in its present, unfinished state. 

Still working on my memoir. Still working on the edits and revisions. It was one thing to write the damn thing, to steep myself in pain so black and thick I never thought I'd get out of it the first time around, let alone willingly revisit it. Sticky tar memories clasp at my ankles and feet, sink me to my knees and pull me down, down, down.

What madness drives me to put any of this down?

What madness is this?

I've reworked and plumbed these memories for so long and so deep there shouldn't be any pain left. Saw my first therapist at 14, and at 45 I'm still tilling those fields. Fields that should be barren and dry by now, but heartbreak blooms anew like the most stubborn weed. Leave one bit of root and it starts to spread and grow again.

People tell me to let it go. People tell me not to live in the past. What's a memoir but living in the past? Re-submerging. Putting on that child skin. Looking through those child eyes. 

What madness is this?

Maybe if I tell it once and tell it right, it'll all be right. I'll make it right. Fix it. Exhume it. Exorcize it. But first I've gotta get inside and understand it. Relive it. Saturate myself in it. Baptize myself in it. Put it back on this one last time (I swear to god) and cast it out into the atmosphere. Let the gods and devils take it up from there. I don't want this to be mine anymore.

But it's not your place to tell me when I'm done.

I ain't done yet.

Not the manuscript and not the pain. I ain't done yet. I ain't done yet and you don't get a say. None of you. Not one. Not you who left me. Left me to deal with the mess you left behind. Not you who drank yourself into oblivion and left me to fend for myself in a house filled with trash. Not you who tied me to a chair and left me there to call for help that never came. Not you who held me down and took something from me that was not given. Not you who looked in my eyes and lied and called me crazy. None of you. Not you.

I ain't done yet.

It's so hard for me to access any of this pain. Most of the time I run on neutral if not apathetic. I can't cry in therapy. I analyze and shrug my shoulders. But my hands tremble at night.

If I'm angry, I get to be.

If my anger took 40 years to rise to the surface, you don't get a say.

That's right.

I ain't done yet.

This memoir is going to take as long as it takes. This anger is going to take as long as it takes. This pain is going to rebloom until I feel through the dirt and find each root and pick it out with my fingers. Fingers raw and bloody from digging. 

But I ain't done yet.

And you don't get to tell me when it's over. Because for me, it ain't over yet.



16 comments:

  1. It has to run its course, however long and twisted it may be.

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    Replies
    1. I wish I could speed this shit up.

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    2. I have to remind myself that just because I poke the wound with a pointed stick to make it bleed faster doesn't necessarily translate to faster healing. It may mean that I'll lose a lot of blood for nothing.

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  2. Your bravery is beautiful. I want to hug it.

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  3. This reaches in and rings an alarm in me that I will continue to ignore for now.

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    Replies
    1. I hate that it does that to you but I also lol'ed a little bit at you so blatantly ignoring it. ;-)

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  4. The child is always within you. Xo

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  5. Nice rhythm... songlike writing.

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  6. You're so brave to go back in - and to tell the story. I know it'll be an honor to read it.

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  7. Hi Mandy,
    I look back at my life and so wish to convay to all how much a
    person can affect the lives of those who were close.
    This I do know, years ago I gave "The Diary of Anne Frank" to someone I love, I watched her grow, she is now married...I asked her last year if she read the book. Her answer: reading "The Diary of Anne Frank" changed my life.
    Your words, your posts inspire and leave a lasting memory.
    I would say to all, how lucky am I that you share your life
    with anyone taking the time to look and read. You do inspire.
    Sincerely,
    Richard

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  8. I know this is a super serious post, but as I was reading it, I saw this line --- "Putting on that child skin. Looking through those child eyes." --- and thought, "Well, damn. That'd make a creepy awesome memoir ;)
    I'm so glad you're persisting. That's what writing is.

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