The other day, posted a piece about being “alright.” It seemed to resonate with many of you. And for that I’m very glad. I take it as a both a gift, and a privilege, when my writing connects with you.
I also take very seriously the scriptural mandate “let not many of you become teachers.” Although I may not be so in any official capacity, what I say here doesn’t exist in a vacuum; in fact, I take it very much to heart that you’ve told me over and over again that my words have touched your hearts. I feel a weight of responsibility, a burden, to bless you.
Which is why I’m glad that “I’m Alright… Are You?” moved you–because it is a piece that is dear to my heart. So much so that I feel we’ve only scratched the surface. In simple point of fact, I think there’s quite a lot more story there, about how those two little words shaped a life, and of a man who–in his fourth decade–is just now beginning to break of their shackles. You have come with me thus far on my journey as I’ve poured out my heart here. Will you follow me a little further, dive a little deeper, as we delve into the depths of just how not alright I am (and truly about how none of us are)?
I have to tell you that this idea both enervates, and frightens, me. There is exhilaration, and intimidation, in equal measure. That the tale will be told is, I think, a good thing; that I’ll be telling it scares the pants off of me. It keeps me up at night. Some people close to me may not care at all for it, and it may not even be your cup of tea. But everything I’ve done here comes back to this. It will be deeply personal, and will contain things I’ve never shared before. About that I can only say, with Anne Lamott, who said: “You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should’ve behaved better.”
I take that to heart: I own what happened to me, but it’s also high time to break free. And I hope you will join me in this process of discovery. Because it’s not just my story–it never has been–but yours as well.
So I’m asking you: If I wrote it, will you read? Will you read of how two little words almost ruined me, and how God is building a new life, phoenix-life, from the ashes of the old one? Will you stick with me if it means time away from working on this blog to pour myself into something deeper?
What I’m asking is: if I wrote a book, would you read it? (Very) Tentatively, I’m calling it “I’m Alright: A Memoir of the Power of Little Words.”
Do you have a better idea for a title?
Please share in the comments.
(Please note: I don’t usually like to talk about works in progress, but in doing so here today it’s my hope that you will keep me accountble. Very simply: if I didn’t believe in this, I wouldn’t tell you).