Story Luck loves to participate in other people’s shows. Story Collider was a great experience. Timely emails and tons of check ins, helpful suggestions. Good back and forth discussions.
Not a Science Story but Maybe a Collider
This was the hardest story to work on. I’m proud of it, but not confident.
One of the things that came up in the round table discussion was that there was a scene in my childhood where I confronted my mother. Confronted her with the wrought emotional vigor of a pretentious child. Told her that I didn’t believe she loved me. Explained that I couldn’t love her anymore. Because she didn’t respect me or others, and I found it loathsome. I told her, “We can be friends, we can be nice to each other. But I can’t offer you love anymore, because I can’t give it out and not get it back. I can’t love you, because I think you’re intentions are bad. I can’t give it out, because it hurts me too much to hear you say it dishonestly.”
She called me a few years ago, sometime after I’d moved to Chicago, brought it up to me, in a round about way. The proverbial heart to heart. We worked it out, started using the words with each other again. Now we use it with more life, honesty, integrity.
There was a question from Erin and Misha, “That seems like part of this story?”
I disagreed. I didn’t want the direct scene in there. But I wonder if it was just too hard to write… or was I correct in thinking, that’s not what this story is about. This story isn’t about the confrontation. It’s about the moment of revelation… and the slow… realization later that it was I who was stingy with love. I with the limited capacity for forgiveness and understanding.
Listening to a Story for Good Luck
I’ve grown up. I’ve been in this storytelling biz for a long time. When you listen to people tell stories for a living, you realize, there’s some really horrible parents out there. Monsters. Sociopaths. Idiots. Cruelty that you just don’t have the imagination for until someone explains it to you.
That’s not what I had. What I had was a 1% childhood. But when the worst thing you’ve ever been through is the worst thing you’re aware of… it seems unduly bad.
Back when I was a little boy, I was what the experts would describe as a functionally only child. I was angsty. On the cusp of chasm that is the Gen X death and Millennial take over. Embarrassingly naïve only because of how confidently I moved through the world before I started really listening.
While writing this I started to research ADHD. Talked with a slew of friends and family that struggle with it, either via loved ones or with the diagnosis themselves. My mother’s never been diagnosed, but I’m confident it’s something she’s had to deal with.
I prefer listening to telling. But sometimes listening is so powerful you’re pushed to tell.
You’ve listened to me here. It’s a gift. A grand and grace you’ve bestowed on me. Thank you. That grace isn’t lost on me. And I owe you.
If this story has lead you to a story you need to share… know that I’m hear for it. Always here for it.