Today I officially started writing Part One of this book, ‘Breaking Radio Silence’. I’ve got a rough draft of the introduction and an outline but to get into the actual book is an accomplishment for me. Why?
First, it’s not going to be an easy book to write. The past six years were hard because of the initial work and the fact I didn’t know what I was getting into. This is why all previous attempts to write this book didn’t pan out. I had to do that work first in order to get to the stage I’m at now. But it’s not easy. It’s not easy because every time I open up this file, a lot of stuff comes up all at once.
So the lesson I’m learning here as I write this is how to navigate that massive up-flow of stuff. In the past it would almost overwhelm me and I would spend a lot of time trying to get it under control. Now that I see it for what it is I can work to get it under control and write what I need to.
And whoever said writing was easy has never written anything in their lives, or at least anything substantial or lengthy. I have never been able to figure out why someone would say writing is easy unless they’re a complete idiot, or an asshole looking to tear someone done. I think people who say writing fall into one of those two categories.
Another thing that makes writing this book hard for me is preparing to deal with the inevitable voices telling me to just get over my shit and get on with my life, no one gives a shit about my feelings in general, and that I’m looking for sympathy.
First, you don’t just get over shit. The old ways of just bottling crap up inside you and just ‘coping’ with it are ending. I tried that and it didn’t get me jack-shit in this world. Bottling my crap up just warped me worse than a galaxy being warped by the fabric of space-time itself. No one has to listen to me or read my writing. But in turn no one gets to tell me not to write or speak out.
Second, I give a shit about my own feelings. If someone else does that’s great but if I’m all alone in feeling this way I’ll survive. Personally, I think there are people that truly do care about my feelings and I’ve kept them from really showing that. That’s something I’m working through now and hope to one day be able to do with people (let them in).
Third, as my late father used to say: you can find ‘sympathy’ in the dictionary between ‘shit’ and ‘syphilis’. I’m not looking to be seen as a martyr like I’ve been accused of in the past. I’m not looking to have some absolve me of my shame and guilt because that’s no one’s responsibility.
I’m not just doing this for myself. And I’m not doing this an act of revenge. I’m doing it to try and reach people who have thought and felt like I have, and who have been through things like I have and may be trying to work through the damage and find a measure of healing. But this is my story and no one else’s.
I was out driving this weekend when I realized those old voices telling me no one cares about my feelings or wants to hear my bullshit have no impact on me anymore because of one simple response: I’ve heard all that shit before and I’m still here. Those words didn’t destroy me and they never will. They were uttered by people who honestly didn’t care about me, and I’m through wasting feelings on them. I don’t hate anyone and I never will. But I’m not going to give power to people who never knew they had it to begin with, and who never deserved it.
Please know not all of ‘Breaking Radio Silence’ will be depressing and hard to read. There will be a lot of moments in the book where I learned things that helped me heal, and lifted huge weights of shame and guilt off my shoulders that should never have been there in the first place. It’s those moments of healing that I know will ease the pain of the updraft of emotion that will probably come every time I sit down to write this book.