Saturday, September 15, 2007

Tell Me Your Story

I first posted this piece as an introduction to my other blog, Grace Notes and it seems apropos to post it again here as my contribution this weekend for Sunday Scribblings. The prompt this week is "collector personality." Though I don't have a collection of salt and pepper shakers, coins, stamps or stuffed animals. My home isn't an Elvis shrine, nor a tribute to Martha Stewart (NOT that there is anything wrong with any of those collections), I do have a collection-like personality..............for sharing laundry......


When we tell stories, we touch hearts. If we talk about theories and speak about ideas, the mind may assimilate them but the heart remains untouched. It is the story of a specific person that is the way to the heart."
Jean Vanier

How would you reply if someone was to ask you, "tell me your story?" Would you hesitate at first? Would you remain a closed book for fear of your tale not being liked? Or would you accept the invitation?

If you decided to tell your story, where would you begin? Right at the beginning when you were born, or somewhere in the middle, or where you are right now? WHERE are you right now? Most likely in a place where you're comfortable......and then perhaps move on from there.

What words would you choose.........ones to describe you, your roles, what you look like or would you choose to describe yourself by your familial history? Or would you get right down to how you feel about yourself............what is it you're thinking and how does it make you feel? I'd like to hazard a guess....the answers may be impacted by the person is who is asking the question and by the time and place of the asking. The question takes on a completely different meaning if it is thrown out at you during the course of a job interview rather than relaxing in an environment where you feel comfortably safe to reveal some of your story. If time is of the essence, your answer would be curtailed and left hanging....... Ah, but if you had the time, what would you like to share?

Tell me your story.......

I love learning of people's stories which is a good thing since my lifework involves being a collector of sorts as well as a storyteller myself. I love to see where a person begins their tale, what a person they jump right into their own history with both feet, or do they dip a toe into the waters first to see if it's safe? And what do they focus on? Do they focus on their external roles and responsibilities, or is it more of an overall summary of life? Do I get to hear about their feelings, their aches and pains, their wishes and regrets? Only if they are willing and comfortable sharing with me. I love being the recipient, when one is trusted to be the engaged feels like a cocooning of hearts. It feels like time stops and the rest of the world carries on without notice.

Tell me your story........and I will tell you mine. It's all I have to share with you.

A chance to explore similarities and differences........and it often makes me late for a destination. The running joke in my family when I was an adolescent (OK, as an adult too) was that if I took the car to go to the convenience store, a ten minute errand at most, expect not to see me for at least an hour. Why? More than likely I was caught up in collecting stories.....or sharing my own. Yeah, I'm a nosey parker, but I think I was born with a story collecting gene or something. It's not like I have a neon sign over my head flashing......"spill your story to this one," but I must send out some type of vibe and don't even know it.

I'm not fact........I love it...especially the spontaneous spillings. Honestly, when it happens, I feel blessed. We live in the very best place in the whole world for spontaneous enlightening stories to be shared because we traditionally embrace the spoken word. Maritimers know the social and interactive connecting magic of personal expression.

Tell me your story..........and you will become part of my own personal tapestry, as I will yours....

Community is formed on the openness and receptivity of neighbours and strangers, of understanding that perhaps the book jacket and preface of our stories, and the events that enhance them may be very different.... your cover may be flashier than mine, mine may be more traumatic than yours but when the stories touch the heart, it is when there is a realization that we are all human beings who feel the same, hurt, grief, pain, sorrow, joy, contentment, frustration, excitement, fear.....that you will find your heart touched. Simply put, the fabric of our community is as rich as the stories we choose to share.

Blogging is heaven for tale spinners and keepers, as I have found out over the past two years writing on my site as well as reading and always learning through the reflections others choose to share. My blog has offered me a window into the worlds of others throughout our global community, has fed my keen interest in people and has added many beautiful threads to my own life tapestry. Though it is a virtual place, the blogworld has the ability to sweep you up and touch a part of your heart where people stories dwell. It surely wasn't something I expected when I first started writing online.....but it is a dwelling I embrace wholeheartedly now, as I continue to add to my collection of stories.

For more collections, visit Sunday Scribblings........


tumblewords said...

Sharing in this fashion has taken on new meaning - a great combination of anonymity and closeness. Collections of stories from around the world. Nice post!

Miss said...

Brilliant and so true. The quasi-anonymity of the 'net has allowed so many of us to glimpse worlds and meet people we never would have, otherwise.

-- MissMeliss

Gilson said...

That's the kind of collection that adds meaningful experiences to our lives.

gautami tripathy said...

That is a great way to learn about another person.

Perplexio said...

I once attempted, as a pick-up line: "So tell me your life story. Start at the beginning, don't leave anything out."

I was met with silence.

Either way, I still think it's a good conversation starter.