After a busy and quite ouchy week last week, I wanted to share a status update with you about my book project and ask for your help. As many of you know, I have been in the flow writing the stories that best capture my journey through Primary Lateral Sclerosis.
All of the stories that I found to be the most telling about this, 9 year and counting journey, are written! Their first drafts anyway. Well, all except the last year, which could be its own book quite frankly. I have not quite figured out how to tell that part of the story yet.
My trusty editor friend and I are now working on the structure of the book. This will be the organizational glue that pulls each of the stories together into a cohesive narrative. I do not wish to share my story chronologically because linear stories tend to bore me as a reader. Instead, I would like to organize it by life theme/lesson.
Each story has at least one main life theme or potential life lesson with some other lessons or themes introduced by the end of it. That is just how the stories went and how I viewed what was happening at the time, so these things are there without necessarily having to say it.
Anyway, here is where I could really use your help. I have a rough list of these themes/lessons that I would like to narrow down into main themes, and perhaps sub-themes beneath them. Many overlap or could be combined.
The problem is that I have been looking at this list for a couple of weeks and I cannot seem to trim it down or combine categories. Perhaps your fresh eyes can help. I will share this long list with you, and if you could comment here on the blog, send me an email or somehow let me know how you might amend the list. You can even add to the list based on what you have read here in my blog about some of my experiences. I am open to any feedback you are up to offering and really appreciate any time you might be spending doing any of the above!
Here is the rough (and long) list:
- Being present/mindful
- Being vulnerable
- Asking for help
- Receiving help
- Perspective of priorities
- Cooperating (with symptoms, pain, fear)
- The power of belief
- Cyclical nature of grief/loss
- Slowing down (value of stillness)
- Letting go (of expectations, outcomes)
- Not taking things personally
- Honoring commitments
- Playing (importance of; learning to)
- Being open (to options, outside of the box coping)
- Impact on others
- Paying attention (to body, others, self, animals)
- Dogs as teachers
Next time, I will share an excerpt of one of my draft stories with you. That is, of course, if something else doesn’t jump out at me that I feel the need to share!