It’s super weird this prompt came up. I’m actually teaching memoir writing with my 11th grade students. 🙂 I’ve been journaling with them and doing all the writer’s notebook entries required of the class because modeling is super important.
So, what would the title of my memoir be? That’s really tricky, and something I’ve actually been thinking about because of my curriculum. I’m going to ask students to come up with a title for their own memoir if they were to title it 20 years down the road, so I think I’ll probably give them this blog post as to why I titled mine like I have.
My title: “Defying Gravity”. Yes. The song from Wicked.
First and foremost, I think I’ve managed well whenever I’ve had to deal with something that knocks me down. I seem to manage to find a way to rise above the adversity and land on my feet. Sometimes, it takes a LOT of effort for that to happen, but it happens. Like the whole wearing-cute-shoes-and-screwing-up-my-ankle thing. It was a pain in the butt, but I’ve come out the other side just fine.
I love that weightless feeling–when I’ve managed to successfully bend something to my will. Make it work like it should have in the first place. That little bit is for technology and mechanical stuff 🙂 I also have managed to be successful in the world of editing, and I’m working on the writing part. As an English teacher, I deal with the world of words all day at work. While I was ‘retired’ from teaching since June, I’ve recently gone back 80% time. I really didn’t have much of a break, actually. I was consulting for special education since September, going in once or twice (sometimes more) each week. I still had my ‘foot in the door’, and the transition hasn’t been as horrible as it could’ve been. Okay. It’s been an adjustment and I’m still working out all the kinks with the commitments I’ve already made, but it’s working and I’ve got this–I’ll land on my feet. I’ll defy gravity.
I’ve started treatment for rheumatoid arthritis, too. Now, if you don’t have an autoimmune disorder you may not realize how absolutely horrendous these things are. I actually had been managing my pain with increased tolerance for YEARS. When I was treated for my ankle, high doses of prednisone to reduce the swelling made me realize (upon discontinuation of the steroids) how badly my hands actually hurt all the time. Apparently, they’re a hot mess, folks. When turning a doorknob is painful and I sometimes can’t grip tightly enough to make the door actually open, it’s time to do something. Also, in the event you’ve never messed around with trying to treat an autoimmune disorder, it’s trial-and-error. The first round of meds didn’t work, so I’m finishing up the second. I actually have a doctor’s appointment today to figure out what’s next…because sitting curled up in bed reading all day isn’t really an option. The fetal position while I’m teaching is pretty much frowned upon. Go figure. But, I know eventually, we’ll jump through all the hoops to find the treatment that’s most effective for me and my special brand of RA. Eventually. And, it really is jumping through hoops–we have to try levels of medication so insurance doesn’t decide to veto paying a bill. Which sucks. I’d really like to skip the next level.
Finances have always been something that’s made me nervous–especially taking out loans for anything. While we’ve had to get a new(er) car for Mr. VampBard to drive for his 45-minute-a-day commute, which required a loan, I know we’ll be able to pay it off because we have a pretty awesome budget established. It’s not easy, but I know we’ve got it.
And…one of the biggest reasons I know I can defy gravity is because I have the unconditional support of my family and my own tribe. Not just my writing sisters, either (although, without them I KNOW I’d be a hot mess…). My Ghutter Girls may have started out as my ‘online book club’, but they are certainly one of the reasons I know I will land on my feet. These three groups of people are my own personal cheerleaders. They’re the reason I’ve changed I think I can into I know I can. Even though every. single. one. of those groups thinks I don’t do enough self-care.
There’s probably a billion reasons why “Defying Gravity” is the perfect title for my memoir…but I think just over 650 words is enough 🙂 Also, I’m kind of a music geek, so HERE is a link to a youtube video of Idina Menzel and Kristen Chenowith singing “Defying Gravity” from 2002. And HERE is just the lyrics in case you don’t want to go full-on musical theater at work or something 🙂 Although, I really don’t see a single thing wrong with that.
Check out the awesome titles from everyone else!