A staple saying in the Philadelphia area thanks to the fine words of Joel Embiid of the 76ers. Ironic that I grew up outside of Philadelphia and grew up going to 76ers games. I even have two jerseys from the 1983 Championship! There may be a little tie in there, but this is something I learned when I was writing my 1st book, The Life.
One day I called a writer friend of mine. The call was during what I called a “writers meltdown” during the editing process. Talk about the power in the “phone a friend” option in life. Something I cash in on when I know someone smarter, more experienced at something than me, I have no qualms about it. My life, sometimes like a game show, has become better since I started to trust in others. During this rather erratic call, he very calmly said to me “Lisa, you have to trust the process.” From that moment on, I hear that voice and let myself do just that.
That stack of papers in the photo are what is soon to be my new book. Chapter by chapter including the sleeve, I have writing that I have carefully collected over the past three years. I decided to print it all, organize it and see what flows.
I have complete chapters mixed with a lot of words on paper that will never make the cut, but for me, the process of reading it all is a very important step. This step is also the most emotionally grueling step, because many times that I have put my thoughts to paper have been tough times. Last night I re-lived my year in court though my writing and yikes, that was just no fun. The pain of reading it exposed the magic and joy of surviving it. Proof that life’s challenges really carve and define who we are and who we want to be.
As therapeutic as it was to put those thoughts on paper, it became next level therapy reading it. Now I will take on the task of streamlining my experience while minimizing the amount of pain I will share with you. I will maintain the structure of the situation, but the reality now is so different. The reality now is that those bad experiences are now just a blip and I have so much more to share, that I don’t want to give the blip too much real-estate in my new book.
Looking back and recapping the past three years is a scattered flurry of thoughts and an incredibly random stream of consciousness. I wrote a lot in Italy. I went though my phone last weekend and took all the notes from my Italy writing, emailed them to myself and created the sickest doc of my adventures in Italy. I was so in my feelings on that month long adventure and I may have just done some of my most beautiful writing while I was on that trip. I was so proud when I actually put it into a doc, printed it out and fell right back into that feeling. I plan a beautiful chapter all about my adventures in Italy. Including what I have learned about myself since I returned from that trip.
The weekend before, I labeled the photos that I totally want to share with you in my next book. Another super fun step. I printed a bunch for a collage and I also put some in frames on my shelves. All important steps in jogging my memory to be sure to include the significant moments and experiences that no matter what, when, why or how, the moments that have kept a smile on my face, the moments that have moved me and empowered me. I can clearly see the thread that weaves through it all. That thread attaches the connections and experiences, sewing everything together the pure joy of living in gratitude.