WriteTogether Reflection: Week Seventeen

I don’t even know where to begin with this week. Honestly, it was really hard to settle in for writing for myself this week. I had to check in with myself a lot about that, the truth is that I had a lot of writing to do for work this week. Sometimes when I write for work, its simple and pretty unattached. A lot of the time though, I question whether I shouldn’t be charging triple for the writing that I do because it is often coming from hundreds of hours of intentional learning and from a lifetime of career and real life experience. It’s like a giant mess of behind the scenes thinking, researching, and feeling filtered down into “effortless” pages of feedback or content that is meaningful and valuable.

Why does this matter? Well, my intention this week was to draft my introduction. And I did that, it was just tougher than I really thought it would be. My personal writing voice is very different from my work writing voice, and it take s a lot of whole body power to move from one voice to the other. Even though the words come from the same brain.

Protocols, programming, or coaching groups require a certain kind of verbal explanation and writing. A book based on my own personal experience, from my perspective, requires a completely different kind of writing. And I had a lot of work writing to do. I found it a lot harder to switch between them than I had planned for. As I wrote the introduction, I found myself needing to use a lot of grounding techniques to stay in my personal voice. I restarted a few times, and I know that I will re-write this introduction again because that is part of the process. I don’t have any regrets about where the introduction went, and even though it was raw and strange to finally start putting some of these things into words, it was like a big piece of a giant weight lift. Just writing it down. This next week I am going to start ordering the chapters and adding initial thoughts throughout, and I cannot wait. I am scared out of my mind for the end result, but each step forward reveals another freedom and I am holding onto that.

Want to know what the introduction to “Between the Mess and the Madness” (working title) looks like? To give you an idea…

“I spent the majority of my life before full-blown adulthood hiding myself and my skills and desires in the shadows. Working behind the scenes and pointing all praise and accolades towards others, that’s what I was raised to do. I was told repeatedly that I would make a good minister’s wife. The message was that a good woman is present in service and silent in objection, selfless and welcoming, tending to the feet of the man of the house and yet drawing no attention to herself so as to not distract from the work of the man or disrupt the flow of the home. I was quiet and forgettable, a good woman. As I grew into my whole self, as I healed from my upbringing and from the things I experienced because of my upbringing and those who took advantage of that, I stopped being quiet. I started speaking my mind, I started disrupting conversations and actions, I started getting in the way of what patriarchal systems designed to happen.

As I returned to who I was created to be, I stopped being a good woman.”

If you know me these days, you know that I may show up quietly, but I don’t sit things out. Not anymore. I am done being a good woman.

I am so much more than that.

Back next week.