Write your story | Moment's Notice

By Maria Montalvo | Oct 03, 2016

This morning, before turning the page to the funnies in The Seattle Times, I noted that my horoscope advised me to “Write your story. Hold on to what you have, and save the best for last.” Interesting directives to link together.

Philosopher David Hume believed that one event or action does not cause another, one action cannot influence the next. We basically live through a series of experiences and interactions with others, guided by our passions, and our interpretation becomes our story.

Hume was a prolific writer, from multivolume histories of the British people to collections of philosophies. Just before he died, Hume wrote an autobiography called “My Own Life.” It was five pages long.

There are so many stories to write, and perhaps like Hume, I see one of the least interesting being mine, but the urge to write remains. With every new person and story, I want to ask the right questions to learn more and know how it turns out.

Just this past Thursday, in the produce section at the Edmonds PCC, a woman and I initiated a random conversation about how a good pair of jeans can make you feel, our long days at work, and the much yet to do at home (taxes for me, fast dinner and two sporting events for her).

I imaged her that evening sitting at a soccer game, her black hair with a few streaks of purple falling out from a warm hat, chatting happily with her son and husband.

A man sitting next to me on the plane several months ago was interviewing for a job in Seattle, and he explained how he and his wife really wanted to settle down. They had been trying to have a baby for years and learned that they would need to pursue a medical route or adopt, but both are so expensive.

In my mind, his next chapter is in a home in north Seattle, with a baby on the way.

Wednesday night, my husband and I were awed by legendary songwriter and storyteller Dolly Parton. Adding to the music was the audience at Kent’s ShoWare Arena: all ages, colors, creeds … punk rock to old-school country … every wonderful kind of love.

We listened together as Dolly told us “some dreams come true and some dreams come false,” but we are all beautiful and deserve to live as ourselves.

My brother taught me years ago that talking to people and learning their stories is the only way to expand my own life.

The individual, beautiful, hopeful, sad, tragic, and even boring stories help me see my story better and want to write, as my horoscope advised, and treasure what I have. Holding on to it is not necessarily up to me, and I do not know when to time my best efforts.

Reading the paper every weekday morning, my husband and I both save the funnies for last. In those few moments over a good cup of coffee, sitting at the kitchen counter, a cartoon punctuates the hope for a good day.

However on Sunday, my husband always reads the funnies first, and I peruse them in the middle of progress through the newspapers. Sunday usually brings the best of the week, so maybe the best in our day-to-day stories does not have to be saved as much as savored.


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