As the release date for my book, The Men I’ve Almost Dated, drew closer, I had more than one person query my choice to put my story out there. Comments have include things like, ‘Are you prepared for what people might say?’ and ‘I couldn’t do it. You’re completely putting who you are out there. There could be a bit of a backlash on some of it.’
Their comments are only reflecting some of the fears I’ve had along the way; fears that, to be honest, still occasionally begin to simmer under the surface before sinking back into the depths once again.
My book is my story, that much is true. Some of the content will make some people uncomfortable. That much is also true. Does it reveal who I am and share the lumps and bumps of a small part of my life’s journey? Yes. It does. And finally, do I always appear in a positive, happy-clappy, innocent light in the stories I’ve shared. No, I don’t always and that’s because it’s real. I don’t believe for one second that any adult with any life experience has led as so-called ‘blameless’ life. We have all made mistakes and explored less than ideal situations, particularly when it comes to matters of the heart. I am no different.
But I know in my heart that if I don’t do this thing, if I don’t share my story, then I will always, always regret it because I’m here to share my story; it’s part of my purpose on the planet. I also believe that it actually might help some other women out there who are like me to feel more comfortable with their own story.
It was during a conversation with a work colleague about six years ago when I first began to think my story might have some real value to the outside world. She was going through a separation after a long-term relationship and most of her friends didn’t understand what she was going through. They were used to her as she’d always been – the one who was stable and ‘taken care of’. But now she was transitioning to her new life and many found that process uncomfortable to witness. Of course, all things she was doing were completely normal for a woman in her 30s going through that process – the partying, the shopping up a storm, the younger men, etc. But later she told me that it was only when I’d shared some of my similar stories and experiences that she began to feel she was normal. She said, ‘I felt like a weight lifted from my shoulders.’
That I could help one person feel better about their journey seemed like an incredible gift.
My book isn’t high-brow but it’s honest. It’s also real and I own every bit of the story. And if it can help another woman to feel better and more comfortable with her own sometimes fraught journey through single life, then I think it’s totally worth putting myself out there.
If it makes others feel uncomfortable, then I think that has far more to do with them than it has to do with me. So I’m going to feel the fears about putting my story out there…and go ahead and do it anyway.
The Men I’ve Almost Dated is now on sale. Find out more>