As a new class begins, I am awash in the giddiness of seeing friends both new and not as new. Anymore, I expect we will all become friends. Maybe not the “Do you want to come over to the house, have dinner?” kind of friends, but the “I’ve written with you.” kind of friend.
In some ways, writing friends seem deeper and richer than other friendships as we bare our stories on paper with ink. I’ve come to long for these friends. For years, this, the written word was the only place I felt I could be real, open, true, raw. Yet it was never shared, never went beyond the page.
Then, writing class. Write 10 minutes and read it aloud. To outsiders, it sounds like the craziest, fear inducing, sphincter spasming thing to do. Write and then READ IT OUT LOUD? You must be insane or into pain.
And yet. And yet, the stories flow. Stories of love and lust, of depression and rape, of accidents, of sobriety, addiction, sobriety, and addiction again. It’s the realest life because it’s honest and each of us reads it aloud. This is the essence of souls connecting through the joy, the shit, the ecstasy, the uggh of it all. And we own whatever gets written. In that cauldron of craziness, those who brave 10 minutes and read become strangers no longer.
I think this is what some say enlightenment is, not some state of perfection, but a place where all come to share stories and accept them as friends.
Joel Morgan is a Performance Coach, Pastor and Author based in Richmond, VA. He writes daily at www.joelmorgan.com/reflections His book, Every. Single. Day. will be published soon.