There is nothing more compelling than a personal narrative, in my humble opinion. And I know that many others agree.
Everywhere you turn, people are divulging their personal stories and sharing how they really are through their writing – good, bad, and ugly. Everywhere I turn, it seems like someone is writing a memoir and/or looking to shed huge light on their life experience.
I definitely can understand why. When you have spent the majority of your life feeling shut off from the world or other people, you want nothing more than to let everyone know who you are and share everything that you never got a chance to with others (not even your family!) in the hopes that you are understood and find your comrades out there in this huge, harsh world.
Then I think about consequences. Every choice has a consequence or result, and I’m sure that speaking your truth is not an exception. I consider myself a very transparent over-sharer who just feels better being authentic and real, but that has bitten me in the ass a few times.
Transparency has its costs and I am still weighing if they are worthwhile for ME. I emphasize this because I have found myself asking every memoirist or personal essayist I’ve encountered if they had any regrets and how they coped with backlash or “haters”.
Now I’m realizing that I have to check in with myself about that, because just like our personal stories and perspectives, it really depends on if it will be a problem for me or even if I can handle other people’s reactions to my truth.
When I think about it, I can’t really do anything about how someone else will react to me speaking MY truth and about MY life. Just as I always try to read other people’s personal narratives or stories with an open heart and non-judgmental stance (which I succeed at like 99.8% of the time), I have to trust that others will too.
For that potential 1% who might not understand my truth, I guess that is their opinion and it shouldn’t hinder me from being true to myself and about myself any further. They always have the option of turning the page or to stop reading altogether. And I have the choice to continue, no matter what they or anybody else will say.