Then and Now of Memoir

Memoirs should contain an underlying conflict, something the main character is struggling with throughout the book. And if I am doing my writerly job, you the reader will recognize the conflict, be taken in at its peak, and ride the wave of resolution with me. But I’m just going to come right and say now, at the beginning, that writing this is my conflict. Past and present, and how to give one its due without sacrificing the other, is my conflict.

Facing my early and tragic mother loss, coming face to face with it and all the ugliness that caused it, while simultaneously living in the present and attempting, finally, to attain a personal freedom that is my birthright.  Letting go of the past by turning to face it, stare it down, go down its dark hallways to see where I left some piece of myself. Past and present. My mother or myself. Then. Now.

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5 thoughts on “Then and Now of Memoir

  1. My heart breaks for your mom even more than you simply because I THINK I can relate to her more — not just because of my situation, but also knowing how my former mother-in-law, a woman in her 70s now, responded. Her disassociation I first took for a bit of oddness, coldness, though I could tell she was very thoughtful and considerate and serving… She did have her fun — a survival mechanism — who could survive, who could not feel as if their very being had not disappeared, that their existence didn’t matter that they didn’t just cave completely into the messages messages messages, overt & covert, that they might as well have never been a mother, a wife, a daughter, a human. Disassociation. Survival. I know it well. My attitude feels cold, sometimes. And I even fool myself. For a while. Then I break down. But to keep from completely breaking apart, I do what I can to survive. Please share this with your mom. Bless you for having the courage to write about this. You have no idea how this could help. Take care. HUGS.

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  2. Kelly, I just found your blog last night and have read the entire thing and all the comments. I want to say thank you. Your words are helping me understand my situation much more clearly. I found myself near tears and understanding everything that was said and relating to the commenters. I’ve know alienation was going on for quite some time, and was able to understand somewhat. However, reading it from this perspective has clarified so much for me. Keep up the writing and don’t stop trying to reach out to your mom. She may be broken and afraid, but her love for you will never die.

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