My memoir update yesterday unintentionally sucked me over to the widow board. It seems I spoke too soon about being forgotten and unread by patrons there.
Somehow someone got it into her head that I was using actual posts from the board to tell my story. Why would I use someone else’s words? Aside from correspondence between Rob and I, my own early blogging, and things I posted on the mommy and soap opera message boards I belonged to, everything I am including is being written now.
Is it so odd for a memoirist to use what amounts to her own diary entries to chronicle a period of time in her life? Perhaps I don’t understand the genre.
In any event, I don’t even have the posts or private messages from my widow board days to draw on because I had myself completely deleted well over a year ago. Rob saved a lot of his stuff including the things we exchanged, and he asked me repeatedly if I really wanted to erase everything I had written there. But I am a shredder. I don’t save old journals or diaries. At one point in my late twenties, I had a stack of spiral notebooks chronicling back to my high school days and I destroyed every single one. Because it was drivel. Just like most of what I wrote on the widow board.
I have only recently begun to save things I wrote on my mommy board but only because I can go back as far as the month before Will got sick and actually re-read the posts I wrote during those first crazy months and then the years of care-taking. I decided my daughter might like a record.
I can only suppose it was my comments about the love-sick widow who cyber dogged Rob which got me into trouble over there. The comments were typical of a flaming. It’s interesting to be flamed on a website you don’t actively participate in and mostly by people who don’t even know who you are or the axe the original poster feels its necessary to continue grinding. But I don’t have those private messages or emails because they weren’t sent to me. I just know of them through my early emails with Rob. It’s an incident which helped build the friendship between us that went on to become much more.
The post itself only came to my attention when my blog stats went wacky. Hundreds of hits and when I traced the link back – there I was.
“This is going to fuck my stats for the month,” I groused to Rob.
“All publicity is good, remember that,” he told me. “Don’t worry about it. It’s just penis envy.”
My husband is a wickedly bad person in a very good way.
But rest assured widow boarders, no one’s actual words – such as they are – will be immortalized in my memoir. My story is mine. The board is just the place where I met Rob, whom I fell in love with and subsequently married thus bringing me to Canada. Events a bit too big to leave out of the recounting of my journey.
I appealed to one of the board directors there. A nice woman really but this was her response which she posted on the thread despite the fact that I have stated – repeatedly now – that I am not using post or pm’s. I didn’t keep any of them.
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How did my life – my journey – which predates my time on a message board and continues long past it, end up ALL ABOUT THEM? This is my life. Where were they when my late husband was vegetative for months and months and in a nursing home? Where were they when I was all alone taking care of a dying nearly blind man with dementia while holding down a full time job and raising my baby? How does my remarriage and moving to another country affect them?
And the kicker is they are acting like I have a book deal signed, sealed and delivered.
This is my life. I will write about whatever parts of it pertain to my journey. Rob is the only decent thing that came out of my time there.
I haven’t violated any rules. The OP came here looking to stir up things for her own amusement whatever she may claim.