Wednesday 25 September 2013

Thought Picnic: The healing that comes with telling

We don’t tell enough
I could almost feel envious of those who have been able to make a living out of the narrative. The narrative being the stories of their lives, their experiences from childhood to the present, bringing recognition and resonance to audiences who can both identify and commiserate.
In fact, I believe we do not all tell our stories enough for too many reasons to mention as we adjudge what we might have been through to be too mundane, lacking in drama and having nothing exotic.
The amazing thing is, the bleeding obvious when repackaged and rephrased, given context and purpose can so easily be profound.
Finding healing beyond abuse
I find myself writing this from the perspective of two sets of stories that need telling, the first I read yesterday of men holding up placards, not in protest or as part of a demonstration, but just a statement, one that went from what they heard to what they experienced – abuse.
You can read their stories here - 27 Male Survivors Of Sexual Assault Quoting The People Who Attacked Them – I cannot add much more to their stories apart from the fact that this is part of the bigger cause called Project Unbreakable, started by 19-year old, Grace Brown in October 2011; “to increase awareness of the issues surrounding sexual assault and encourage the act of healing through art.
I added two memories of mine to the mix with the following tweets.

To Fathers and mothers of ourselves
The second story came from relationships we have with our parents concerning our upbringing initially and then the sharing of the secrets of our lives, many of which following the context of my last few blogs are difficult for our parents to understand.
Many of us still harbour too many secrets and are yet to come into the fullness of who we really are to those closest to us by blood – some wait for the release that might come when our forebears have passed on – in all, there is loss and there is regret, fulfilment and closure are not that easy to obtain.
Here in The Power of Storytelling on the OutTales Around the Fire blog that I follow, I could really identify with the three elements of ‘Killing My Mother’ that the author, Ade Adeniji narrated. I am sure many Nigerians can relate to this - The Father+Mother Project - Storytelling Performance takes place on the 5th and 6th of October, 2013.
A journey we must make
The most profound part of this piece can be found in the comment left by Pauline King, and she said, “I believe that we all gain enormous gifts from our traumatic childhoods and relationships – if we can but move from blame and despair to forgiveness and hope.
I dare say, in the process of understanding our lives, probably too many of us are still in the blame and despair stage and the journey to forgiveness and hope is like one of a thousand miles through dreadful places the boldest angels will fear to tread.
If anything, we must embark on that journey, if we are to find healing and a new fullness of life.

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