The term memoir is derived from the French word mémoire, which means memory, or reminiscence.
As a teenager, I found comfort in writing. I didn’t keep journals; instead I wrote down the whole story; a detailed account of how things happened. Sometimes I would write, when I was hurting, just to offload… it worked; each time I put my emotions into writing, I felt an inexplicable sense of calm wash over me. I found writing therapeutic… and I kept my stories close to my chest; those were my emotions, my thoughts…
After writing a good number of stories, I wondered what would happen to them; if they would just go to waste. I decided I would publish them someday; but then, I didn’t think that dream would ever materialize-that it would be possible to give people an insight into my life… until I read a book by Whoopi Goldberg. I was eighteen at the time. The particular book helped me realize that my stories wouldn’t just end up on a shelf, unread.
I enjoyed (still do) writing about me; my life. If I was to write about anything, it would have to be something I’ve gone through- my experiences… or telling other people’s experiences, based on my perspective; the way I see it; letting people see the world (different happenings) through my eyes.
I chose to write my memoirs, because like a good majority, I feel I have been through so much- both good and bad alike, and I felt that by sharing my experiences I could connect with others who have experienced the same…and to enlighten those who haven’t travelled the road I have, because when all is said and done, it remains evidently clear that life is too short to experience everything.
If I can use my experiences-most of them painful- to help someone else, then that will at least make them happy memories. It makes me see the good in my suffering; it wasn’t all for naught.
I have read other people’s memoirs, and I get the impression that even though I feel I have been through a lot, there are others, whose experiences are simply out of this world. Nonetheless, this realization helped me understand that I don’t need to be living an extra-ordinary life to have something important to say…
My memories are my identity.