December 4, 2016
Finished: Love Warrior by Glennon Doyle Melton
This book was on my list before Oprah picked it, and I wasn’t surprised when she did. It’s a very brave, pretty amazing memoir, and O and G make a great team.
I relate to sooo much in this book, as a woman, a mom, a wife, a FEELER. There were whole paragraphs and pages that I’ve essentially written elsewhere myself, sometimes literally word for word, like batting thoughts away like Whack-a Mole.
I rarely read books more than once, even when I want to. It’s just so hard when I’ll already never be able to read all the books I want to once. But I can see myself re-reading parts of this one again, such as trying to reconcile the different ways a husband and wife want to know and be known, and how demolishing it can feel to attempt to share trauma. I don’t think I’ll ever feel like I don’t fall short on the latter, and Glennon nails it:
“When a friend asks, ‘What happened?’ I want to pick up a crystal vase and smash it into the ground. That’s what happened, I’d say. The few times I try to tell the shattering as a story, I regret it. Spoken words make what happened to us to tidy, too palatable, too ordinary. I can’t describe the ferocity of the fear and rage inside me with words tame enough for the light of day. When I finish the telling, I want thunder to roll and mouths to drop open. But most often, the listener makes the pain harder for me by trying to make it easier for her.”
The pain of suffering alone is great, but not as great as someone not “getting it” and substituting endless platitudes for hearing and witnessing. That is exactly why I retreated to my cave during my trauma, and it’s why I would do it again, with the exception of the community I’ve found in Resolve and Beat Infertility.
There are things in the book I don’t relate to, too. I have never been at war with my body (that is not something many women say, not to mention women who have battled infertility), in fact, I feel completely in touch with it, I know it, and I love it, even when sometimes I could like it a little more.
And while I love all the ‘truth,’ and ‘strip down and get real,’ and ‘fight for real love’ spirit of the book, I tend to take a more crude approach to that spirit, which involves a lot more “fucks” and a lot fewer “holding space” and “light” (though Glennon does drop her share of F-bombs, which I definitely appreciate). I am much more pounding-out-miles-and-shit-in-my-running-shoes than breathe-from-your-belly-classes and connecting-with-the-God-in-me-in-hot-yoga. For now, I just don’t have the patience or make up for those things. (And forget the religion, I don’t have that at all.)
But I love that too, that it’s not one size fits all, that it is—and has to be—whatever size fits each of us.
Love that message!
What else I love: Glennon lives in Florida, we are both readers and writers, we both have young kids; I know that somehow, some time, our paths will cross. And we will hug the hug of sister Warriors. I’m looking forward to that.